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“KNOWLEDGE is like the light of Heaven : free, pure, pleasant, exhaustless. It invites ALL to

possession ; it admits of no pre-emption, no rights exclusive, NO MONOPOLY.”

"Promote, as objects of primary importance, institutions for the general diffusion of knowledge."

Washington's Farewell Address.

NEW-YORK:

PUBLISHED BY THE COMMITTEE, No. 650 BROADWAY.

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OFFICERS.

President :

HONOURABLE STEPHEN VAN RENSSELAER.

Vice-Presidents :

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His Ex. Governor Marcy, N. Y. | His Ex. Governor Everett, Mass. Hon. Albert Gallatin,

Hon. Daniel Webster, Hon. Reuben H. Walworth,

His Ex. Governor Dunlap,

Me. Rt. Rev.B. T. Onderdonk, D.D.“ Hon. Ruel Williams, Hon. Franklin Peirce, N. H. Hon. Horace Everett,

Vt. Francis Wayland, D. D. R.I. Hon. Roger M. Sherman.

Conn. Hon. Theo. Frelinghuysen, N. J. Hon. Horace Binney, Penn. Hon. Robert C. Greer, Penn. Hon. James Bayard,

Del. Hon. Roger B. Taney, Md. Thomas Sewall, M. D. D. C. Hon. Windham Robertson, Va. Hon. William Gaston, N. C. Gen. James Hamilton, S.C. Hon. John M. Berrien,

Geo. Hon. Henry Hitchcock, Ala. Hon. Robert J. Walker, Miss. Hon. Alexander Porter, La. Hon. Thomas J. Lacy,

Ark. Hon. Felix Grundy, Tenn. Hon. Henry Clay,

Ky. Rt. Rev. C.P. M'Ilyaine, D.D. Ohio. Hon. William Hendricks, Ind. His Ex. Governor Duncan, Ill. Hon. Lewis F. Linn,

Mo. Henry R. Schoolcraft, Esq. Mich.

Board of Directors : Rev. Alonzo Potter, D. D. N. Y. | Thomas McAuley, D. D. N. Y. Rev. John Knox, D. D.

Francis L. Hawks, D. D. Jacob Janeway, D. D.

Thomas Dewitt, D. D. Rev. John A. Vaughan,

Rev. George Potts, Rev. Gorham D. Abbott,

Rev. John Proudfit, Hon. Benjamin F. Butler,

Prof. Benj. Silliman,

Conn. Hon. Samuel T. Armstrong, Mass. Hon. Samuel Jones, N.Y. Hon. Samuel Hubbard,

Hon. Myndert Van Schaick, Peter G. Stuyvesant, Esq. N. Y. Hon. Heman Lincoln, Mass. Hugh Maxwell, Esq.

Bradford Sumner, Esq. Charles Butler, Esq.

David Graham, Esq. N. Y. James Brown, Esq.

Hiram Ketchum, Esq. Frederick A. Tracy, Esq.

Timothy R. Green, Esq. Eleazer Lord, Esq.

George S. Robins, Esq.

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Ansel W. Ives, M. D. Thomas Cock, M. D. John T. Gilchrist, Esq. Cornelius Baker, Esq. Samuel W. Seton, Esq. Isaac Collins, Esq.

N. Y. John Griscom, L. L. D. N. Y.

William A. Tomlinson, Esq.
A. P. Halsey, Esq.
Isaac S. Lloyd, Esq. Penn.

Thomas Wharton, Esq.
Penn.

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Executive Committee.
James Brown, Esq.
N.Y. Thomas Cock, M. D.

N. Y.
Thomas Dewitt, D. D.

Ansel W. Ives, M. D.
Prof. John Proudfit, University," W. Cooper, Esq. Lyc. N. Hist.“
John Torrey, M. D. Med. Coll.“ William A. Tomlinson, Esq.
A. Potter, D. D. Un. College, John T. Gilchrist, Esq.
W. Fiske, D. D. Pres. Uny. Conn. Edward S. Gould, Esq.
Rev. Jacob Abbott, Mass. Timothy R. Green, Esq.
Rev. Bela B. Edwards,

Marinus Willett, M. D.
Rev. Leonard Bacon, Conn. Charles F. Hoffman, Esq.
Rey. Calvin E. Stowe, Ohio. William Betts, Esq.
Rev. J. L. Blake,

N. Y. Arthur Bronson, Esq.
Prof. S. F. B, Morse, Uny.

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PROSPECTUS

OF THE

AMERICAN SOCIETY

FOR THE

DIFFUSION OF USEFUL KNOWLEDGE.

1. GENERAL DESIGN OF THE INSTITUTION.

The establishment of a National Institution for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge, has, for a length of time, engaged the attention of individuals in different parts of this country. In the course of the past year, measures were adopted in relation to this subject, of which the public has already been informed. The Institution has been duly organized ; and the Executive Committee now respectfully submit to the consideration of their fellowcitizens, the following statement of its plan and objects :

It is the design of this Society to unite the efforts of literary, scientific, wealthy, and benevolent men, in diffusing useful knowledge, and in employing the arts of printing and engraving, in a way most likely to be interesting, salutary, and elevating to the popular mind.

There is in this country, it is believed, at the present time, a demand for the means of knowledge, which may with propriety be characterized as a natiONAL DEMAND; a demand for useful knowledge from all classes of the people far exceeding the supply.

There are, however, in the vast resources of the literature of foreign countries, in the productions of eminent authors at home, and in the enterprise and spirit of our citizens, means amply adequate for the supply of this demand. From these resources the means of wholesome intellectual culture, and of individual and social improvement, may be brought into the circle of every family, and within the reach of every reader.

The materials for carrying out this design are abundant:- Delineations of the works of our Creator; the innumerable objects of interest in the animal, vegetable, and mineral kingdoms; the history of the world ; the varied scenes and events of past ages; the origin of nations; the growth of empires; the ruin of cities; the overthrow of kingdoms and thrones; narratives of voyages and travels over every sea and land; the civil and political circumstances; the intellectual, social, and domestic condition of

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