Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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PETTEE, Otis, inventor, born in Foxborough, Massachusetts, 5 March, 1795; died in Newton Upper Falls. Mass., 12 February, 1858. He was a manufacturer in Newton Upper Falls, and made several inventions in cotton-machinery' notably in roving frames or double speeders, by introducing a geared cone, with gears arranged in a hyperbolic series. This invention, according to Professor Daniel Treadwell, was "absolutely perfect, and founded upon principles that are eternal." Mr. Pettee was postmaster of Newton Upper Falls in 1828-'33, and selectman for several years. In 1848 he became president of the Charles River railroad, which place he filled until his death, and he was also director of the Newton ban k.-It is son. William Henry, mining engineer, born in Newton Upper Falls, Massachusetts, 13 January, 1838, was graduated at Harvard in 1861, and continued there in 1863-'5 as assistant in chemistry. During 1865-'8 he studied at the Freiberg, Saxony, mining-school, and was appointed in 1869 instructor in mining, and in 1871 assistant professor in that subject at Harvard, also serving as assistant in 1870-'1 to Professor Josiah D. Whitney on the geological survey of California. In 1875 he was called to the University of Michigan, where he has since remained, and now fills the chair of mineralogy, economic geology, and mining engineering. Professor Pettee is a member of various scientific societies, was vice-president of the American institute of mining engineers in 1880-'2, and in 1887 was general secretary of the American association for the advancement of science. Besides his scientific papers, he prepared the " Contributions to Barometric Hypsometry," issued by the survey of California in 1874, a supplementary chapter in 1878, and appendices A and C of Josiah D. Whitney's " Auriferous Gravels of the Sierra Nevada" (Cambridge, 1880).
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