Chamberlin, Thomas Chrowder

Chamberlin, Thomas Chrowder,

1843–1928, American geologist, b. Mattoon, Ill., grad. Beloit College, 1866. He was professor of geology at Beloit (1873–82), president of the Univ. of Wisconsin (1887–92), and professor of geology and director of the Walker Museum at the Univ. of Chicago (1892–1919). Chamberlin was chief geologist of the geological survey of Wisconsin (1873–82) and the founder (1893) of the Journal of Geology. While studying glaciation and climates in past geologic times he noted defects in the nebular hypothesis of Laplace that led him to formulate, with the American astronomer F. R. Moulton, the planetesimal hypothesis of the origin of the solar systemsolar system,
the sun and the surrounding planets, natural satellites, dwarf planets, asteroids, meteoroids, and comets that are bound by its gravity. The sun is by far the most massive part of the solar system, containing almost 99.9% of the system's total mass.
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. Chamberlin wrote The Geology of Wisconsin (1873–82), A Contribution to the Theory of Glacial Motion (1904), A General Treatise on Geology (with Rollin D. Salisbury, 1906), The Origin of the Earth (1916), and Two Solar Families (1928).