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“If I have seen further it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants.” Isaac Newton in letter to Robert Hooke, February 5, 1675.

The predecessor agencies of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration have had many leaders in the American science community. These individuals made great contributions either through their scientific accomplishments or through their ability as science administrators. Collectively, these “Giants” influenced the development of the infrastructure of the American science community and were either the founders or pioneers in the development of American participation in many of the physical, geographical, and marine biological sciences. American developments in cartography, geodesy, geophysics, oceanography, meteorology, climatology, metrology, ichthyology, marine biology, and other fisheries-related sciences would have had significantly different developmental paths if not for the influence of these individuals. Organizations such as the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Geophysical Union, the American Meteorological Society, the American Society of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, and the American Fisheries Society all would have significantly different histories without the influence of these scientists and administrators. Indeed, even the early histories of the National Academy of Sciences, the Smithsonian Institution, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology were intimately tied to NOAA predecessor organizations and many of the men whose lives are related in these pages. Join us and learn about some of the early shakers and movers of American science.

picture of cleveland abbe
Cleveland Abbe - biographical sketch by W.J. Humphreys.
george davidson
George Davidson - biographical sketch by Charles G. Yale
alexander agassiz
Alexander Agassiz
biographical sketch by Sir John Murray
picture of charles sanders peirce
Charles Sanders Peirce - biographical sketch of Peirce from the NOAA Corps Bulletin
picture of spencer fullerton baird
Spencer Fullerton Baird - biographical sketch by George Brown Goode.
picture of charles schott
Charles Anthony Schott - biographical memoir of Charles Schott by Cleveland Abbe
picture of william ferrel
William Ferrel - memorial articles and works by ferrel

harry wexler Dr. Harry Wexler - tribute article
picture of george brown goode
George Brown Goode - biographical sketch of Goode by David Starr Jordan
picture of alexander dallas bache
Alexander Dallas Bache - eulogy on Professor Bache by Professor Joseph Henry.    

Publication of the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), NOAA Central Library.

Last Updated: June 8, 2006 9:24 AM

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