My Essay on the "Divining Rod," (vulgus, "Water-Witching,") having proved interesting to a number of my friends, I have concluded to give it to the public, with the hope that some useful practical results may be derived from it. I have no apology to make for presenting this subject in a serious light. I regard it as one strictly in the domain of science, and, therefore, worthy of the consideration of scientific men. I have no fear of ridicule, knowing for myself and "not for another," that what is here presented is the truth.
To those who seek absolute truth, I need not recommend a reading of these pages. To those who merely live by science, drawing their sustenance from it as from the "convenient cow," as Goethe says, I will simply say, imprison yourselves, gentlemen, in your shell; the world will move quite as well without you.
I add a number of notes from various sources to which I had not access before writing my own experience.