This material is offered for the special consideration of lawyers, psychologists, sociologists, social workers, and all those who have to do with the formulation of criminal law, the treatment of criminals, and the moulding of public opinion concerning the enemies of organized society.
During the period immediately following the signing of the Armistice, while the writer was acting as Chief Psychological Examiner at Camp Sherman, Ohio, it became possible to begin the collection of data presented in this book. The writer had been asked to appear before a joint session of the Finance Committee of the Ohio General Assembly, for the purpose of presenting some data in regard to the prevalence of feeble-mindedness in the State of Ohio. At that meeting, the writer met Warden Thomas of the Ohio Penitentiary, and he suggested that a mental test be given to the prisoners in that prison. General Smith, Commanding General of Camp Sherman, generously allowed the author the necessary leave, and ordered any help needful. All the men in that prison who could be spared from their duties were marched in groups into the dining hall and given the Alpha mental test under the same conditions described for recruits in Volume 15 of the Memoirs of the National Academy of Sciences, except that no literacy requirement was used.
Shortly afterwards, the writer gave the Alpha test to the criminals in the Ohio Reformatory, the Ohio Penitentiary for Women, the Ohio Prison Farm, the Illinois Penitentiary at Joliet, the Illinois Reformatory at Pontiac, the Indiana Penitentiary, the Indiana Reformatory, and various criminal groups in and about Camp Sherman.
In the fall of 1922, Doctor E. A. Doll, during a conversation in the Princeton Psychological Laboratory, generously offered to give to the writer any data whatever that the writer might care to select from the files in Trenton, New Jersey. In that way, data on about twelve hundred cases from the New Jersey Penitentiary came into the writer's possession.
In the spring of 1923, the writer received permission from the warden of the Maryland Penitentiary, Colonel Sweezey, to give the Alpha test to his prisoners. Colonel Sweezey also very generously allowed the writer access to his files. In that way, a large amount of new and interesting data was gathered.