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 Louis Agassiz

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Louis Agassiz Famous memorial

Original Name
Jean Louis Rodolphe Agassiz
Birth
Motier, Seebezirk, Fribourg, Switzerland
Death
12 Dec 1873 (aged 66)
Cambridge, Middlesex County, Massachusetts, USA
Burial
Cambridge, Middlesex County, Massachusetts, USA
Plot
Bellwort Path, Lot 2640
Memorial ID
13 View Source

Scientist. He was a paleontologist, glaciologist, geologist and one of the founding fathers of the modern scientific tradition. Born Jean Louis Rodolphe Agassiz, a son of a six-generation protestant minister, he rejected Darwinism and believed Devine Creation along with biological racism. His mother was a physician. He was educated in the universities of Switzerland and Germany, earning a doctorate of philosophy at Erlangen in 1829 and his medical degree in 1830 from the University of Munich. In 1837 he proposed that the Earth had been subjected to a past ice age and presented the theory to several groups. He and Englishman, William Buckland, visited the mountains in Scotland, finding clear evidence in different locations of glacial action, and their discovery was announced to the Geological Society of London in successive communications. In 1840, Agassiz published a two-volume work, "Studies on Glaciers". With a trip funded by the King of Prussia, he came to the United States in 1846 and was made offers he could not refuse. He accepted a professorship at Harvard University at the Lawrence Scientific School, becoming an excellent lecturer. His wife and children stayed in Switzerland with his wife dying in 1848. After bringing his son and two daughters to the United States, he married an educator, Elizabeth Cabot Cary, in 1850. In 1859, he founded the Museum of Comparative Zoology on the campus of Harvard University, serving as its first director until his death. He urged the creation of a National Academy of Sciences, became a founding member in 1863 and was also appointed a regent of the Smithsonian Institution in 1863. He had a detailed regiment of observational data gathering and analysis and wrote multivolumes of textbooks on his finds. He campaigned constantly for the resources of American science and research which made lasting contributions to evolutionary biology and systematics. In the early 1860s his health started to decline. In 1820 two German scientists had traveled to Brazil, bringing back fish. As a college student, he was selected to study an extensive collection of Brazilian fishes, publishing a paper on his finds. He had always wanted to travel to Brazil. In April of 1865, he led a party to Brazil. After his return in August of 1866, an account of the expedition, "A Journey in Brazil," was published in 1868. In December of 1871, he made a second eight-month excursion to South America exploring the Strait of Magellan. Shortly before his death, he started a school with a $50,000 endowment for the study of natural science in Massachusetts. At the time of his death, he was publicly recognized as America's leading scientist. From 1882 to 1899, his second wife, Elizabeth Agassiz, served as the First President of Radcliffe College, an educational facility that she co-founded. She wrote books on natural history and after her husband's death, his biography.

Scientist. He was a paleontologist, glaciologist, geologist and one of the founding fathers of the modern scientific tradition. Born Jean Louis Rodolphe Agassiz, a son of a six-generation protestant minister, he rejected Darwinism and believed Devine Creation along with biological racism. His mother was a physician. He was educated in the universities of Switzerland and Germany, earning a doctorate of philosophy at Erlangen in 1829 and his medical degree in 1830 from the University of Munich. In 1837 he proposed that the Earth had been subjected to a past ice age and presented the theory to several groups. He and Englishman, William Buckland, visited the mountains in Scotland, finding clear evidence in different locations of glacial action, and their discovery was announced to the Geological Society of London in successive communications. In 1840, Agassiz published a two-volume work, "Studies on Glaciers". With a trip funded by the King of Prussia, he came to the United States in 1846 and was made offers he could not refuse. He accepted a professorship at Harvard University at the Lawrence Scientific School, becoming an excellent lecturer. His wife and children stayed in Switzerland with his wife dying in 1848. After bringing his son and two daughters to the United States, he married an educator, Elizabeth Cabot Cary, in 1850. In 1859, he founded the Museum of Comparative Zoology on the campus of Harvard University, serving as its first director until his death. He urged the creation of a National Academy of Sciences, became a founding member in 1863 and was also appointed a regent of the Smithsonian Institution in 1863. He had a detailed regiment of observational data gathering and analysis and wrote multivolumes of textbooks on his finds. He campaigned constantly for the resources of American science and research which made lasting contributions to evolutionary biology and systematics. In the early 1860s his health started to decline. In 1820 two German scientists had traveled to Brazil, bringing back fish. As a college student, he was selected to study an extensive collection of Brazilian fishes, publishing a paper on his finds. He had always wanted to travel to Brazil. In April of 1865, he led a party to Brazil. After his return in August of 1866, an account of the expedition, "A Journey in Brazil," was published in 1868. In December of 1871, he made a second eight-month excursion to South America exploring the Strait of Magellan. Shortly before his death, he started a school with a $50,000 endowment for the study of natural science in Massachusetts. At the time of his death, he was publicly recognized as America's leading scientist. From 1882 to 1899, his second wife, Elizabeth Agassiz, served as the First President of Radcliffe College, an educational facility that she co-founded. She wrote books on natural history and after her husband's death, his biography.

Bio by: Linda Davis


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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Added: 31 Dec 2000
  • Find a Grave Memorial ID: 13
  • Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/13/louis-agassiz: accessed ), memorial page for Louis Agassiz (28 May 1807–12 Dec 1873), Find a Grave Memorial ID 13, citing Mount Auburn Cemetery, Cambridge, Middlesex County, Massachusetts, USA; Maintained by Find a Grave.