NEWBERRY, JOHN STRONG (22 Dec. 1822-7 Dec. 1892) is best known for his work in vertebrate paleontology and paleobotany and as head of the 2nd Ohio Geological Survey. He was born in Windsor, Conn., the son of Henry and Elizabeth Strong Newberry, and came to the Western Reserve with his family in 1824, graduating from WESTERN RESERVE UNIVERSITY in 1846 and Western Reserve Medical School in 1848. Newberry married Sarah Brownell Gaylord in 1849. He practiced medicine in Cleveland in the early 1850s and was recording secretary of the Cleveland Academy of Natural Science (1845) and first president of the Cleveland YMCA (see YOUNG MEN'S CHRISTIAN ASSOC.) (1854). In the second half of the 1850s, he participated in three major western expeditions, making a number of important geological observations and discoveries. Newberry joined the Sanitary Commission during the CIVIL WAR. Afterward (1866) he was appointed to the faculty of the School of Mines at Columbia University, where he remained for 24 years. During this time he maintained a Cleveland residence, where his family lived, and from 1869 to 1882, he headed the 2nd Ohio Geological Survey. In 1867 he was president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. In 1884 Newberry joined the U.S. Geological Survey and in 1888 helped to found the Geological Society of America. He died in New Haven, Conn., and was buried in LAKE VIEW CEMETERY. Among things named in his honor are various fossils, a preglacial Ohio river, a glacial Lake in New York, both a point and a butte in the Grand Canyon, and a volcano in Oregon. Three of Newberry's seven children founded what was to become the MEDUSA CORPORATION.

Fairchild, H.L. "A Memoir of Professor John Strong Newberry," Proceedings of the Second Joint Meeting, Scientific Alliance of New York (1893).

John S. Newberry Files, Cleveland Museum of Natural History.

Article Categories