Scientist of the Day

Ferdinand de Lesseps

November 19, 2019

Ferdinand Marie de Lesseps, a French diplomat, was born Nov. 19, 1805.  De Lesseps was deeply involved in two French canal efforts.  The first was the Suez Canal project.  De Lesseps had no training in engineering, but he knew how to make friends with people in power,...

James W. Abert

November 18, 2019

James W. Abert, an American soldier, explorer, topographer, and artist, was born Nov. 18, 1820.  James’ father, John James Abert, was the head of the U.S. Corps of Topographical Engineers, a new organization formed in 1838 to supervise the mapping of the...

Albertus Magnus

November 15, 2019

Albertus Magnus, a German scholastic philosopher, died Nov. 15, 1280, at an age over 80; his date of birth is not known.  By any measure, Albertus was the greatest natural scientist of the Middle Ages.  His work began, as did all nearly all medieval scholarship, as a...

Raymond Ostrander Smith

November 14, 2019

Raymond Ostrander Smith, an American postage stamp and bank note designer, was born Nov 14, 1873.  Smith started out working for the American Bank Note Company in New York Cityfrom 1887 to 1897, and again from 1902 until his death in 1933. But it is the five years...

Bert Taylor

November 13, 2019

Bert Leston Taylor, an American newspaper writer, was born Nov. 13, 1866.  Taylor invented what pressroom gurus call the “colyum”–a newspaper column salted with clippings, quips, poems, and contributions from readers. Taylor wrote for the Chicago...

James Basire II

November 12, 2019

James Basire II, an English engraver, was born Nov. 12, 1769.  Basire was the third in a four-deep line of London engravers, the last three of whom were all named James.  Oddly, all of the Jameses specialized in scientific engraving, by which we mean engraving images...