Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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BOOTH, James Curtis, chemist, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 28 July 1810. He was educated at classical schools in Philadelphia, then at Hartsville seminary, and was graduated at the University of Pennsylvania in 1829, after which he spent a year at the Rensselaer polytechnic institute, where he afterward received the degree of Ph. died In 1832 he went to Germany, and studied chemistry in Wohler's private laboratory in Cassel, at a time when there were no laboratories in Germany arranged for the regular reception of students. He spent some time under G. Magnus in Berlin, then in Vienna, and afterward devoted himself until 1835 to studying technical chemistry at various places in Germany and England. In 1836 he established in Philadelphia a laboratory, the first of its kind in the United States, for instruction in chemical analysis and chemistry applied to the arts. A course under Dr. Booth was considered essential to those who followed chemistry, and many of his students have become well known. Among these are J. F. Frazer, Thos. H. Garrett, his present partner, R. S. McCulloh, Campbell Morfit, Clarence Morflt, and R. E. Rogers. During the same year (1836) he became professor of applied chemistry at the Franklin institute, and for nine successive winters he continued his lectures, making three full courses of three years each. In 1849 he was appointed smelter and refiner of the United States mint in Philadelphia, a place that he has since retained. His published papers cover topics in the entire domain of analytical and technical chemistry. His larger works include the first and second "Annual Report of the Delaware Geological Survey" (Dover, 1839); "The Memoirs of the Geological Survey of the State of Delaware" (Dover, 1841);" Encyclopaedia of Chemistry," in the preparation of which he was assisted by Martin H. Boy6, R. S. McCulloh, and Campbell Morfit (Philadelphia, 1850); and a report on "Recent Improvements in the Chemical Arts" (Washington, 1852). He was president of the American chemical society in 1884 and 1885.
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