Return to previous page

Clarence King


Return to Mount Shasta home page
Members of the Geological Survey of California, 1860
Members of the Geological Survey of California, 1860

1842 Clarence Rivers King born on January 6th to James Rivers King and Caroline Florence Little of Newport, Rhode Island
1848 King's father dies on June 2nd
King's move to Pomfret, Connecticut so Clare could attend school
1852 Dr. Parks from Christ Church school in Connecticut resigns
King and Mother move to her brother's home in New Haven, Connecticut
1854 Move to Hartford, Connecticut to attend well-known public high school
1856 Presidential race between John C. Frémont and James Buchanan
1857 Depression, Kings lose livelihood
Mother begins seeing George Howland
1859 King, age 17, quits school and moves to New York
Darwin publishes The Origins of Species by means of Natural Selction
1860 Mother marries George Howland
Stepfather pays for King's education at new Sheffield Scientific School
1861-1865 Civil War
1862 Gardiner joins King at Yale
King among first graduating class
1863 While on boating trip on Lake Champlain arrested as draft dodgers
Geological studies, field work on the Hudson River, attended lectures by Agassiz
Helps form Society for the Advancement of Truth in Art
Moves to California with Gardiner, Dick Cotter joins them along the way
Meets Professor William Brewer and Professor Josiah Dwight Whitney
Volunteers as California Geological Survey assistant
Determines age of Sierra by finding fossils in metamorphosed slate
Went to Mount Shasta region at end of season
1864 Field studies of Yosemite, Nevada, Sierra Nevada
1866 Stepfather dies
Gardiner and King come up with idea for 40th Parallel Survey at Yosemite
1867 Congress approves 40th Parallel Survey with King in charge
King begins survey with study of Comstock Lode in Nevada
1868 Great Basin field work
1869 Utah field work
Recognizes that Lake Bonneville and Lake Lahonton were Pliocene lakes
1870 Contributes to Mining Industry (Volume III of 40th Parallel Survey)
Study of western volcanoes (Shasta, Rainier, Hood)
Climbed Mount Shasta and named the Whitney glacier
1871 Rocky Mountain/Great Plains field work
Wrote articles about active glaciers in American Journal of Science and Atlantic Monthly
Winters in Hawaii
1872 Field work in California, Nevada, Wyoming
Exposes diamond fraud
Winters in San Francisco
1873 Mining consultant
Works on survey results
Climbs Mount Whitney
Finds fossils in the Owens Valley
1876 Elected to National Academy of Sciences (youngest member)
1877 Wrote article "Catastrophism and Evolution" in American Naturalist
Gave speech of same topic to graduating class at Sheffield Scientific School
1878 Wrote Systematic Geology (Volume I of 40th Parallel Survey)
1879 United States Geological Survey formed
1880 King becomes first director of United States Geological Survey
1881 Resigns directorship of USGS
1887 Meets and falls in love with Black woman named Ada
1888 Marries Ada under assumed name of James Todd
1893 Wrote "The Age of the Earth" in American Journal of Science
King put in Bloomingdale Asylum
1901 King dies from tuberculosis on December 24 in Phoenix, Arizona

Geology ~ Environment ~ Native Americans ~ Folklore ~ History ~ Art ~ Literature
Recreation ~ Maps ~ Mount Shasta Collection ~ Bibliography ~ Lesson Plans ~ About Project