100 Years Ago Today

A History Of Events And Happenings From Exactly One Hundred Years Ago

Naturalist Begins Study Of Gulf Of Maine

Henry Bryant Bigelow was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1879. He graduated from Harvard in 1901 and traveled the oceans of the world working with noted naturalist Alexander Agassiz from 1901 until Agassiz’s death in 1910. One of his first papers had been on the birds of Labrador and he always had a strong interest in the Northern waters of the Atlantic coast.

The GRAMPUS, named for a large dolphin, is a wooden, two-masted, schooner rigged keel vessel launched in 1886 and designed to collect live fish.

On July 9, 1912 Bigelow set sail on the GRAMPUS to study the water in the Gulf of Maine for the US Bureau of Fisheries. His methods are groundbreaking because he plans to cover the entire body of water and make a nearly comprehensive study of its fishes, plankton, and physical oceanography.

” Few living zoologists have been as fortunately placed as were we on setting sail on the Grampus from Gloucester on our first oceanographic cruise in the Gulf of Maine on July 9, 1912, for a veritable mare incognitum lay before us…”


Henry Bryant Bigelow at the wheel of the GRAMPUS

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