Shepard, Charles Upham; A Report on the Geological Survey of Connecticut. New Haven, 1837. Octavo, pp. 188 with text figures.
In the original pale brown title wraps, spine titles partially perished, text with light foxing. Originally in the collections of the Franklin Institute with their blind stamp and small book plate. The later penned signature of the Yale College Library on the cover. The book is preserved in a calf over marbled boards clam shell box. In very good condition.
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Shepard (1804-1886) was an American mineralogist. He was born in Little Compton, Rhode Island, and died in Charleston, South Carolina. He studied at Brown University in 1820-21, and in 1824 graduated from Amherst.
Shepard was exposed to minerals at an early age. At the age of fifteen, he began to collect minerals and meteorites. He carried his collections first to Brown University and then to Amherst. At Amherst he became a student of Amos Eaton [1776-1842], who encouraged Shepard to visit numerous various mineral localities. Subsequently, he traveled throughout the country east of the Mississippi and discovered a number of new species. Shepard collected pink and green tourmalines from Paris, Maine and rutile from Georgia and his collecting made it possible for him to build a large and important mineral collection through exchanges with European collections. His collections would become one of the largest and finest in the United States. His "Treatise on Mineralogy"" is considered one of the earliest and best American textbooks on mineralogy.
Shepard studied with Thomas Nuttall [1786-1859] before becoming assistant to Benjamin Silliman [1779-1864] at Yale. He was a lecturer on natural history at Yale from 1830 to 1847 and also became a professor of chemistry and natural history at Amherst in 1835, a post he held until 1852. Shepard was a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the societies of natural science at St. Petersburg and Vienna, as well as the Royal Society of Göttingen. His publications were in mineralogy, chemistry and geology, with most of his papers being published in the American Journal of Science. A major portion of the collection was destroyed in a fire at Amherst in 1881.
On June 15th, 1835, Shepard and James Percival were commissioned by the Governor of Connecticut to complete a geological survey of the state. A short preliminary report was completed and submitted in 1836 but publication was delayed until Shepard completed his mineralogical and economical part of the survey in 1837. Much of the report contains Shepard's descriptions of the mines, quarries, diggings and other potential mineral prospects in the State. The Legislature ordered only 2,000 copies to be printed and copies in the original title wraps are quite scarce.