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Bowman, Isaiah (26 December 1878–06 January 1950), geographer, geologist, and educator, was born at Berlin (now Kitchener), Ontario, Canada, the son of Samuel Cressman Bowman and Emily Shantz, farmers. When he was eight weeks old the family moved to a farm near Brown City, Michigan. After attending country schools, Bowman began teaching. At age twenty-one he enrolled in the Ferris Institute, a college preparatory school in Big Rapids, Michigan, where he was influenced by geographer Harlan H. Barrows. In 1900, after a year of intensive study, he entered the Normal School in Ypsilanti, Michigan, where he studied under ...

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Davis, William Morris (12 February 1850–05 February 1934), geologist, meteorologist, and geographer, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the son of Edward Morris Davis, a businessman with interests in railroads, mines, and the textile trade, and Maria Mott. Davis was associated with the civic elite of Philadelphia on both sides of his family. His maternal grandmother was the abolitionist ...

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Shaler, Nathaniel Southgate (20 February 1841–10 April 1906), geologist, geographer, and educationalist, was born in Newport, Kentucky, the son of Nathaniel Burger Shaler, a medical doctor, and Ann Hinde Southgate, the daughter of a prominent legal and landholding family.

Prior to his enrollment in Harvard’s sophomore class of 1859, Shaler—due to ill health—had been educated informally by a Swiss tutor, Johannes Escher, who instructed him in classical languages and initiated him into the rudiments of German idealist philosophy. With such a preparation Shaler turned first to the study of the humanities at Harvard, but he soon abandoned what he considered mere scholasticism to enlist as a student of ...