American People Famous Geologists from the United States

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List of notable or famous geologists from the United States, with bios and photos, including the top geologists born in the United States and even some popular geologists who immigrated to the United States. If you're trying to find out the names of famous American geologists then this list is the perfect resource for you. These geologists are among the most prominent in their field, and information about each well-known geologist from the United States is included when available.

List people include John Muir, John Bidwell and more.

This historic geologists from the United States list can help answer the questions "Who are some American geologists of note?" and "Who are the most famous geologists from the United States?" These prominent geologists of the United States may or may not be currently alive, but what they all have in common is that they're all respected American geologists.

Use this list of renowned American geologists to discover some new geologists that you aren't familiar with. Don't forget to share this list by clicking one of the social media icons at the top or bottom of the page. (228 items)

1
George Gibbs is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 58 (1815-1873) George Gibbs was an American ethnologist, naturalist and geologist who contributed to the study of the languages of indigenous peoples in Washington Territory. Known for his expertise on Native ...more

2
John Bidwell is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 81 (1819-1900) John Bidwell was known throughout California and across the nation as an important pioneer, farmer, soldier, statesman, politician, prohibitionist and philanthropist. He is famous for leading ...more

3
Harrison Schmitt is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
age 82 Harrison Hagan "Jack" Schmitt is an American geologist, retired NASA astronaut, university professor and former U.S. senator from New Mexico. In December 1972, as one of the crew on ...more

4
John Muir is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 76 (1838-1914) John Muir was a Scottish-American naturalist, author, and early advocate of preservation of wilderness in the United States. His letters, essays, and books telling of his adventures in nature, ...more

5
James F. Reilly is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
age 64 James Francis Reilly, II, Ph.D. is an American geologist and a former NASA astronaut who has flown on three space shuttle missions: STS-89, STS-104 and STS-117. He was born at Mountain Home Air ...more

6
Anthony R. Barringer is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 84 (1925-2009) Anthony R. "Tony" Barringer was a Canadian/American geophysicist. He made numerous contributions to mineral exploration technology. His most famous work was the development of the ...more

7
Eugene Merle Shoemaker is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 69 (1928-1997) Eugene Merle Shoemaker, also known as Gene Shoemaker, was an American geologist and one of the founders of the field of planetary science. He is best known for co-discovering the Comet ...more

8
Richard Mourdock is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
age 66 Richard Earl Mourdock was the 53rd treasurer of the state of Indiana, serving from February 10, 2007, to August 29, 2014. Running with the support of the Tea Party movement, he defeated six-term ...more

9
John Wesley Powell is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 68 (1834-1902) John Wesley Powell was a U.S. soldier, geologist, explorer of the American West, professor at Illinois Wesleyan University, and director of major scientific and cultural institutions. He is ...more

10
Bruce C. Murray is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 82 (1931-2013) Bruce C. Murray was born November 30, 1931 in New York, NY. He is a professor emeritus of planetary science and geology at Caltech and was Director of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory from April 1, ...more

11
Henry Fairfield Osborn is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 78 (1857-1935) Henry Fairfield Osborn, Sr. ForMemRS was an American geologist, paleontologist, and eugenist, and the president of the American Museum of Natural History for 25 years.

12
James Hall is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 87 (1811-1898) James Hall was a geologist and mountaineer.

13
J. J. Stevenson is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
J. J. Stevenson Dec. at 83 (1841-1924) John James Stevenson was an American geologist, born in New York City. He graduated at New York University in 1863, became professor of chemistry at West Virginia University for two years, then ...more

14
Benjamin Franklin Mudge is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 62 (1817-1879) Benjamin Franklin Mudge was an American lawyer, geologist and teacher. Briefly the mayor of Lynn, Massachusetts, he later moved to Kansas where he was appointed the first State Geologist. He led ...more

15
Farouk El-Baz is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
age 80 Farouk El-Baz is an Egyptian American space scientist who worked with NASA to assist in the planning of scientific exploration of the Moon, including the selection of landing sites for the ...more

16
Louis Agassiz is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 66 (1807-1873) Jean Louis Rodolphe Agassiz, commonly known as Louis Agassiz, was a Swiss-born and European-trained biologist and geologist recognized as an innovative and prodigious scholar of Earth's natural ...more

17
Jim Gibbons is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
age 73 James Arthur "Jim" Gibbons is an American attorney, aviator, geologist, hydrologist and politician. He served as the 28th Governor of the U.S. state of Nevada from 2007 to 2011. He is ...more

18
George Perkins Merrill is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 75 (1854-1929) George Perkins Merrill was an American geologist, notable as the head curator from 1917 to 1929 of the Department of Geology, United States National Museum. He was educated at the University of ...more

19
John Hickenlooper is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
age 66 John Wright Hickenlooper, Jr. is an American Democratic Party politician and the 42nd and current Governor of Colorado. Hickenlooper has served as Governor since 2011. He serves as a member of ...more

20
Oliver C. Farrington is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 70 (1864-1934) Oliver Cummings Farrington was an American geologist. He was born at Brewer, Maine, and was educated at the University of Maine and at Yale University, where he was tutor in 1890-91. Between ...more

21
Clarence King is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 59 (1842-1901) Clarence Rivers King was an American geologist, mountaineer, and author. He served as the first director of the United States Geological Survey from 1879 to 1881. King was noted for his ...more

22
Harry Glicken is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 33 (1958-1991) Harry Glicken was an American volcanologist. He researched Mount St. Helens in the United States before and after its famous 1980 eruption, and blamed himself for the death of fellow ...more

23
Art Gilkey is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 27 (1926-1953) Art Gilkey was an American geologist and mountaineer.

24
James Douglas is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 81 (1837-1918) James Douglas was a Canadian born mining engineer and businessman who introduced a number of metallurgical innovations in copper mining and amassed a fortune through the copper mining industry ...more

25
Kathryn D. Sullivan is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
age 66 Kathryn Dwyer Sullivan is an American geologist and a former NASA astronaut. A crew member on three Space Shuttle missions, she is the first American woman to walk in space. She was confirmed by ...more

26
Ferdinand Vandeveer Hayden is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 58 (1829-1887) Dr. Ferdinand Vandeveer Hayden was an American geologist noted for his pioneering surveying expeditions of the Rocky Mountains in the late 19th century. He was also a physician who served with ...more

27
James Dwight Dana is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 82 (1813-1895) James Dwight Dana was an American geologist, mineralogist, volcanologist, and zoologist. He made pioneering studies of mountain-building, volcanic activity, and the origin and structure of ...more

28
Richard A. Muller is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
age 74 Richard A. Muller is an American professor of physics at the University of California, Berkeley. He is also a faculty senior scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Most ...more

29
Walter B. Jones is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 82 (1895-1977) Walter Bryan Jones, Ph.D. was an American geologist and archaeologist. Born in Alabama, Jones earned his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Alabama and his doctorate from Johns ...more

30
Edwin James is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 64 (1797-1861) Edwin P. James was a 19th-century American botanist, geographer and geologist who explored the American West. James completed the first recorded ascent of Pikes Peak. Born in Weybridge, Vermont, ...more

31
W. G. Ernst is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
age 86 W. Gary Ernst is an American geologist specializing in petrology and geochemistry. He currently is the Benjamin M. Page Professor Emeritus in Stanford University's Department of Geological and ...more

32
Robert Garrels is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 72 (1916-1988) Robert Minard Garrels was an American geochemist. Garrels applied experimental physical chemistry data and techniques to geology and geochemistry problems. The book Solutions, Minerals, and ...more

33
David Deming is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
age 64 David Deming, an American geologist and geophysicist, is an associate professor of Arts and Sciences at the University of Oklahoma in Norman. He graduated from North Central High School in ...more

34
William Morris Davis is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 84 (1850-1934) William Morris Davis was an American geographer, geologist, geomorphologist, and meteorologist, often called the "father of American geography". He was born into a Quaker family in ...more

35
Henry Schoolcraft is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 71 (1793-1864) Henry Rowe Schoolcraft was an American geographer, geologist, and ethnologist, noted for his early studies of Native American cultures, as well as for his 1832 expedition to the source of the ...more

36
William Henry Holmes is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 87 (1846-1933) William Henry Holmes was an American explorer, anthropologist, archaeologist, artist, scientific illustrator, cartographer, geologist and museum curator and director.

37
John Strong Newberry is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 70 (1822-1892) John Strong Newberry was an American geologist, physician, explorer, author, and a member of the Megatherium Club at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.

38
John J. Clague is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
age 72 John Joseph Clague PhD FRSC is an award-winning Canadian authority in Quaternary and environmental earth sciences. He is a Professor of Earth Sciences at Simon Fraser University and an Emeritus ...more

39
Luna Leopold is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 91 (1915-2006) Luna Bergere Leopold was a leading U.S. geomorphologist and hydrologist, and son of Aldo Leopold. He received a B.S. in Civil Engineering from the University of Wisconsin, Madison in 1936; an ...more

40
Thomas Chrowder Chamberlin is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 85 (1843-1928) Thomas Chrowder Chamberlin was an influential American geologist and educator. In 1893 he founded the Journal of Geology, of which he was editor for many years.

41
Charles Frederick Hartt is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 38 (1840-1878) Charles Frederick Hartt was a Canadian-American geologist, paleontologist and naturalist who specialized in the geology of Brazil.

42
William John McGee is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 59 (1853-1912) William John McGee, LL.D. was an American inventor, geologist, anthropologist, and ethnologist, born in Farley, Iowa.

43
Edward Hitchcock is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 71 (1793-1864) Edward Hitchcock was an American geologist and the third President of Amherst College.

44
William Barton Rogers is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 78 (1804-1882) William Barton Rogers was a geologist, physicist, and educator at the University of Virginia from 1835 to 1853. In 1861, Rogers founded the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The university ...more

45
Marie Tharp is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 86 (1920-2006) Marie Tharp was an American geologist and oceanographic cartographer who, in partnership with Bruce Heezen, created the first scientific map of the entire ocean floor. Tharp's work revealed the ...more

46
Louis Caryl Graton is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 90 (1880-1970) Louis Caryl Graton, American geologist, chemist and educator, began his career in 1900 as assayer for Ledyard Gold Mines Ltd., near Rockdale, Ontario. He moved on to Canadian Goldfields Ltd. ...more

47
Heinrich Ries is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 80 (1871-1951) Heinrich Ries, Ph.D. was an American economic geologist, born in Brooklyn, New York, and educated at Columbia University and at the University of Berlin. He was employed principally at Cornell ...more

48
William North Rice is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 83 (1845-1928) William North Rice was an American geologist, educator, and Methodist minister and theologian concerned with reconciliation of science and religious faith.

49
George Otis Smith is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 73 (1871-1944) George Otis Smith was an American geologist.

50
Allan V. Cox is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list Famous Geologists from the United States
Dec. at 61 (1926-1987) Allan Verne Cox was an American geophysicist. His work on dating geomagnetic reversals, with Richard Doell and Brent Dalrymple, made a major contribution to the theory of plate tectonics. Allan ...more