Gentlemen and Fellow Physicists of America:

We meet to‐day on an occasion which marks an epoch in the history of physics in America; may the future show that it also marks an epoch in the history of the science which this society is organized to cultivate! For we meet here in the interest of a science above all sciences, which deals with the foundation of the Universe, with the constitution of matter from which everything in the Universe is made, and with the ether of space by which alone the various portions of matter forming the Universe affect each other even at such distances as we may never expect to traverse whatever the progress of our science in the future.

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