Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 79.djvu/313

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309
THE PROGRESS OF SCIENCE

THE PROGRESS OF SCIENCE
PROFESSOR WHITMAN AND THE MARINE BIOLOGICAL LABORATORY

At the annual meeting of the corporation of the Marine Biological Laboratory held at Woods Hole in August, resolutions were adopted recording the obligation of the laboratory to the great man who more than any other was responsible for making it what it is, and after the adjournment of the meeting the trustees and members of the corporation visited the quiet graveyard by the sea where lies the body of Charles Otis Whitman.

 Keen

In intellect, with force and skill
To strive, to fashion, to fulfil,

Whitman was born to be a leader. In his zoological researches he exhibited a patience, a balance, a singleness of purpose, a certain classical quality, which placed him among the few worthy to be named with Charles Darwin. His two principal researches, the one on the embryology and phylogeny of the leaches, the other on the phylogeny, heredity and behavior of pigeons, gave rise to a number of papers, which in content and form may be ranked among the masterpieces produced in this country. But in both cases a great part of his work remains unpublished. He was impatient of quick results and sought for fundamental solutions of great problems which perhaps his material was incapable of yielding. There remains, however, a great mass of manuscripts, observations and drawings, together with the unique collection of living pigeons, which will yield a valuable series of publications.

In spite of the fact, or perhaps on account of the fact, that Whitman devoted himself to his research work with complete devotion, he exercised an exceptional influence on zoological l education and organization. He was I professor in the University of Tokyo at the time when that university was being adapted to modern conditions. When Clark University was organized, he was given charge of the work in zoology, and again on the establishment of the University of Chicago. The department of zoology there, of which he was head until his death, took high rank among the scientific departments, which in a few years have given Chicago distinction in science, equaled only by Harvard and Columbia. Whitman's varied activities are noted in a resolution passed at the Christmas meeting of the Eastern Branch of the American Society of Zoologists, which reads:

The Eastern Branch of the American Society of Zoologists records with profound regret the death of Professor Charles Otis Whitman on December 6, 1910. Professor Whitman was one of ' the founders of this society; he was chairman of the committee that issued the first call for organization of the American Morphological Society, the forerunner of the American Society of Zoologists, and he was president of the society for the first four years, 189194. He was organiser of the Journal of Morphology and its editor for many years, and in this capacity also exerted a strong influence on the development of zoological research in America. As director of the Marine Biological Laboratory for twenty-one years, he exerted an even more powerful and entirely unique influence in the development of biological science. As an investigator he was painstaking, enthusiastic and thorough, as a thinker on biological problems profound and far-sighted. Devoted to principle, his uncompromising personality sometimes made enemies, but the charm of his character made him devoted friends. His influence will long remain as one of the most important forces in the history of zoology in America.

The Woods Hole Laboratory was the