The science of light-production may be considered to have been born in the latter part of the eighteenth century and beginning with that period a few chapters treat of the development of artificial light up to the present time. Until the middle of the nineteenth century mere light was available, but as the century progressed, the light-sources through the application of science became more powerful and efficient. Gradually mere light grew to more light and in the dawn of the twentieth century adequate light became available. In a single century, after the development of artificial light began in earnest, the efficiency of light-production increased fifty-fold and the cost diminished correspondingly.
, the working-shifts changing at certain periods regardless of the rising or setting sun. Adequate artificial lighting decreases spoilage, increases production, and is a powerful factor in the prevention of industrial accidents.
It has ever been true since the advent of artificial light that the intellect has been largely nourished after the completion of the day's work. The highly developed artificial lighting of the present time may account for much of the vast industry of publication. Books, magazines, and newspapers owe much to convenient and inexpensive artificial light, for without it fewer hours would be available for recreation and advancement through reading. Schools, libraries, and art museums may be attended at night for the betterment of the human race. The immortal Lincoln, it is said, gained his early education largely by the light of the fireplace. But all were not endowed with the persistence of Lincoln, so that illiteracy was more common in his day than in the present age of adequate i