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Darwin Correspondence Project

Washington Caruthers Kerr


American geologist. Graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1850. Computer in the office of the Nautical Almanac, 1852–6. Professor of chemistry, mineralogy, and geology at Davidson College, NC, 1857–62. Appointed state geologist, 1864. Joined the US Geological Survey in 1882. Developed the concept of ‘frost drift’, analogous to glacial drift, which described how alternate freezing and thawing produced deep movement and bedded arrangement of loose materials on slopes.


Dictionary of North Carolina biography


Dictionary of North Carolina biography. Edited by William Stevens Powell. 6 vols. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press. 1979–96.