McGuffey Reader and Poetry Story 39


  1. “I will think of it.” It is easy to say this; but do you know what great things have come from thinking?
  2. We can not see our thoughts, or hear, or taste, or feel them; and yet  what  mighty  power  they  have!
  3. Sir Isaac Newton was seated in his garden on a summer’s evening, when he saw an apple fall from a tree. He began to think, and, in trying to find out why the apple fell, discovered how the earth, sun, moon, and stars are kept in their places.
  4. A boy named James Watt sat quietly by the fireside, watching the lid of the tea kettle as it moved up and down. He began to think; he wanted to find out why the steam in the kettle moved the heavy lid.
    think of it
  5. From that time he went on thinking and thinking; and when he became a man, he improved the steam engine so much that it could, with the greatest ease, do the work of many horses.
  6. When you see a steamboat, a steam mill, or a locomotive, remember that it would never have been built if it had not been for the hard thinking of some one.
  7. A man named Galileo was once stand ing in the cathedral of Pisa, when he saw a chandelier swaying to and fro.
  8. This set him thinking, and it led to the invention of the pendulum.
  9. James Ferguson was a poor Scotch shepherd boy. Once, seeing the inside of a watch, he was filled with wonder. “Why should I  not  make  a  watch?”  thought  he.
  10. But how was he to get the materials out of which to make the wheels and the mainspring? He soon found how to get them: he made the mainspring out of a piece of whalebone. He then made a wooden clock which kept good time.
  11. He began, also, to copy pictures with a pen, and portraits with oil colors. In a few years, while still a small boy, he earned money enough to support his father.
  12. When he became a man, he went to London to live. Some of the wisest men in England, and the king himself, used to attend his lectures. His motto was, “I will think of it;” and he made  his  thoughts  useful  to  himself  and  the  world.
  13. Boys, when you have a difficult lesson to learn, do n’t feel discouraged, and ask some one to help you before helping yourselves. Think, and by thinking you will learn how to think to some purpose.

Go to Lesson 40 here.