Shaler, Nathaniel

Shaler, Nathaniel (Southgate)

(1841–1906) geologist, geographer; born in Newport, Ky. After graduating from Harvard (1862), he served with the 5th Kentucky Battery in the Union army, then returned to assist Jean Louis Agassiz at Harvard, studying abroad afterward. In 1868 he returned to Harvard for good, becoming an extremely popular professor, writing magazine articles and books, such as A First Book in Geology (1884). He headed the Atlantic Coast Division of the U.S. Geological Survey (1884–1900) and revitalized Harvard's Lawrence Scientific School while dean (1891–1906). Books that reflect his interest in conservation and the environment are Aspects of the Earth (1889) and Man and Earth (1905).
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.