In St. Nicholas Capt. H. D. Smith of Ihe United States revenue coast servioo tells of his experiences "Hunting for Shells," from the lsland of Ceylon to the Dry Tortugas. Capt. Smith saya: Pearl shells are valuable, and fiue specimens are hard to obtain. They are found in the Treamotee, Gumbier and Tribual group of islands. The choicest frorn Macassar. These are the white-edged sh'ells, worth $800 a ton, and from these the finest pearl buttons are manufactured. The most celebrated pearl fisheries lie near the coast of Ceylon, the Persiau Gulf, and in the waters of Java and Sumatra. The Australian coast in the neighborhood of Shank's Bay and Roebuck Bay furnishes some very largo shells, some of them weighlng from two to three pounds each. The fisheries of Baja, Gulf of California, are very rich, France controlling the gems procured there. The meat of the pearl oyster is bought by the Chinamen, who dry the leathery little bivalves, or seal them up in caes and snip them to their countrymen in San Francisco. The pearl shells readily sell upon the spot at from $1.50 to $5 lier pound. Pearls and tears have for ages been associated, and the magie vlrtues of the pearl were held in high esteem in early timos, as they are to-day with the East Indians. It is said that Queen Margaret Tudor, consort of James IV. of Scotland, previous to the battle of Flodden Field, had many presentiments of the disastrous issue of that conflict, owing to a dream she had three nights in succession, that jewels and sparkliüg coronets were suddenly turned 'into pearls - which the superstitious belleved was a sign of coming wldowhood and of tears. Pearls are of various colors, r.nd in India the red pearls were highly prized by the Buddhists, who used them in I ndorning. Pearls aro forraed to protect the shell flsh. They are due to I a secretion of a shelly substance : around some irritating partiële, and their composition is the same as that of mother-of-pearl.