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Darwin Correspondence Project

Clinton Hart Merriam


American zoologist and government official. Studied biology and anatomy at Yale. Went on the Hayden Survey to north-west Wyoming, and wrote the report on mammals and birds of the expedition, 1872. Published A review of the birds of Connecticut, 1877. MD, College of physicians and surgeons, New York, 1879; physician, specialising in gynaecology, 1879–83. Published The mammals of the Adirondack region, Northeastern New York (1882–4). Charter member of the American Ornithologists’ Union, 1883. Chief of the government Division of Economic Ornithology and Mammalogy (later Division of Biological Survey, and Bureau of Biological Survey), 1886–1910. Studied North American bears, 1910–39. Advocate of life-zone theory, which used temperature extremes as the main explanation of biogeographic distribution.




ANB: American national biography. Edited by John A. Garraty and Mark C. Carnes. 24 vols. and supplement. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press. 1999–2002.