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Pioneer: The First American Doctorate in Meteorology

William A. KoelschGraduate School of Geography, Clark University, Worcester, Mass. 01610

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This study examines one aspect of the early history of meteorology as a university discipline in America—the establishment in the late 19th century of a program of research and graduate training at The Johns Hopkins University. The cooperative efforts of Cleveland Abbe and other Weather Bureau officials with President Daniel Coit Gilman and Hopkins faculty members resulted, in 1891, in the establishment of the Maryland State Weather Service in association with the university. Under Hopkins geologist William B. Clark, the Service became both the focus for research and publication concerning the meteorology and climatology of the Chesapeake Bay region, and the vehicle for a graduate program, culminating in the award of the first American doctorate in this field to Oliver L. Fassig in 1899.

1 Research for this paper was supported partially by a grant from the William Libbey Research Fund of the Graduate School of Geography, Clark University.

This study examines one aspect of the early history of meteorology as a university discipline in America—the establishment in the late 19th century of a program of research and graduate training at The Johns Hopkins University. The cooperative efforts of Cleveland Abbe and other Weather Bureau officials with President Daniel Coit Gilman and Hopkins faculty members resulted, in 1891, in the establishment of the Maryland State Weather Service in association with the university. Under Hopkins geologist William B. Clark, the Service became both the focus for research and publication concerning the meteorology and climatology of the Chesapeake Bay region, and the vehicle for a graduate program, culminating in the award of the first American doctorate in this field to Oliver L. Fassig in 1899.

1 Research for this paper was supported partially by a grant from the William Libbey Research Fund of the Graduate School of Geography, Clark University.

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