John Wesley Powell: Pioneer statesman of federal science: Chapter A in The Colorado River region and John Wesley Powell (Professional Paper 669)

Professional Paper 669- A
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Abstract

In the middle decades of the 19th century, American science matured rather rapidly. The general scholar with an interest in natural history gave place to the specialist in a particular science, and the various sciences themselves became distinct from each other and from the general body of knowledge.

The geological sciences made especially rapid progress in America because of the opportunity and the necessity to explore the vast western territories. Although Clarence King later remarked1 that before 1867 (when Congress authorized both the Geological Exploration of the Fortieth Parallel and the Geological and Geographical Survey of the Territories) "geology was made to act as a sort of camp-follower to expeditions whose main object was topographic reconnoissance," and that it amounted to "little more than a slight sketch of the character and distribution of formations, valuable chiefly as indicating the field for future inquiry," American geologists had, in fact, established a professional society, the Association of American Geologists, as early as 1840. Several years later this society became the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Several State surveys were founded in the 1830's, and by 1840, courses in geology were regularly included in the curricula of several colleges.

Additional publication details

Publication type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Title John Wesley Powell: Pioneer statesman of federal science: Chapter A in The Colorado River region and John Wesley Powell (Professional Paper 669)
Series title Professional Paper
Series number 669
Chapter A
DOI 10.3133/pp669A
Year Published 1969
Language English
Publisher U.S. Government Printing Office
Publisher location Washington, D.C.
Description 22 p.
Larger Work Type Report
Larger Work Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Larger Work Title The Colorado River region and John Wesley Powell (Professional Paper 669)
First page 1
Last page 21
Country United States
Other Geospatial Colorado River