William Eimbeck for
35 years a highly distinguished officer in the Coast and Geodetic
Survey, was stricken with paralysis and died on the same day
at his residence in this city [Washington, D.C.].
As a geodesist his name is indelibly connected with the trigonometrical
survey along the 39th Parallel of Latitude from the Atlantic
to the Pacific Ocean, the great mountain stretch in this work
extending from the Sierra Nevada mountains to Pike's Peak,
having been completed by him. This involved a combination
of Geodetic operations unparalleled in any country by reason
of: the difficulties involved in their execution; the extent
of high mountain work completed by him; the lengths of the
lines in the figures; and the average elevations of the stations
One line in this scheme is 183 miles long, which exceeds the
greatest line in the figure, which spanning the straits of
Gibraltar, connects the triangulation of Europe and Africa,
and which hitherto contained the longest line observed as
part of a regular triangulation scheme.
Among the memorials to his ability as a student and investigator
are his improvement on the Chronograph, his invariable Reversible
Pendulum and the Duplex Base Apparatus designed for and constructed
by the Coast and Geodetic Survey.
A life time of study and research added to charming natural
eloquence and marked clarity in exposition made Mr. Eimbeck
one of the most interesting and instructive of companions,
these distinguished qualifications being set off by a modesty
as extraordinary as the merits it failed to obscure. Broad
and tolerant in his sympathies and with no thought of self
in his generosity to the unfortunate, the life just closed
is one that can justly claim only praise when it is referred
to and affection when it is recalled.
C&GS Bulletin, 4/17/1909