A History of Mathematics in America before 1900

A History of Mathematics in America before 1900

A History of Mathematics in America before 1900

A History of Mathematics in America before 1900

Excerpt

When we consider the increase of interest in the study of mathematics in this country since the year 1900, and the recent achievements in this field, we may be tempted to feel that the subject had no history of any moment before the twentieth century. Even a brief examination of the question, however, shows not only that the work done before the year 1875 is worthy of attention, but that the succeeding quarter of a century saw laid the foundations upon which the scholars of today have so successfully built.

It was because of my belief in the importance of the subject that I accepted the invitation extended by the Carus Monograph Committee to undertake the work. I made the condition, however, that I should be allowed to join with me Professor Ginsburg, whose ability to search out mathematical facts in libraries is unusual and who, as I had known from years of experience, would attack the problem in complete sympathy with my own methods. As a result of our desire to consult original sources whenever possible, we have spent a much longer time upon ascertaining the facts, in sorting out what seemed the most important, in arranging the material, and in preparing the text, than would seem necessary to one not accustomed to such an undertaking. I wish, therefore, to say that to Professor Ginsburg I am indebted for a painstaking examination of source material in several of our largest libraries, and that to . . .

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