Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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McGEE, W J [he has no Christian name], geologist, born in Dubuque county, Iowa, 17 April, 1853. He was self-educated, and in early life invented and patented several improvements on agricultural implements, subsequently he turned his attention to geology, and made important investigations in that direction, including researches on the loess of the Mississippi valley, the examination of the great quaternary lakes of Nevada and California, and the study of a recent fault-movement of great scientific interest in the middle Atlantic slope. In 1881 he received the appointment of geologist on the United States geological survey, and in that capacity he visited in 1886 the city of Charleston for the purpose of studying the earthquake disturbances in its vicinity. He is a member of many scientific societies in the United States, and has published nearly fifty scientific papers in the proceedings of the societies of which he is a member, and in technical journals.
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