To Take Foul Air Out of a Well.
The well was to be cleaned, but the man that took the job was afraid to go down until he had ascertained the quality of the air at the bottom. He let down a lighted candle, and When it descended to about six feet of the bottom it went out as suddenly as though extinguished by a whiff of air. That was all he wanted to know. He was then sure that the well had poisonous gas in it, and took a small umbrella, tied a string to the handle and lowered it open into the well. Having let it go nearly to the bottom, he drew it up, carried it a few feet from the well and upset it. He repeated this operation twenty or thirty times, with all the bystanders laughing at him, then again lowered the light, which burned clear and bright even at the bottom. He then condescended to explain that the gas in the well was carbonic acid gas, which is heavier than air, and therefore could be brought in an umbrella just as so much water. It was a simple trick, yet perfectly effective.