William Herbert Hobbs

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William Herbert Hobbs, Ph.D. (Worcester, Mass., July 2, 1864 – Ann Arbor, MI, January 1, 1953) was an American geologist.

William Herbert Hobbs c. 1925

Background and educationEdit

William Herbert Hobbs, geologist and leader of four expeditions to Greenland, was born in Worcester, Massachusetts, July 2, 1864, the son of Horace and Mary Paine (Parker) Hobbs. He was educated at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (in 1883 he was graduated with the degree of Bachelor of Science.), at Johns Hopkins (Ph.D., 1888), and at Heidelberg (1888–89).[1]


He filled several positions at the University of Wisconsin–Madison (1889–1906). From 1886 to 1906 he served with the United States Geological Survey. He received his appointment as Professor of Geology, Aug. 6, 1906. He also taught at the University of Michigan (1906 - 1934).[2]

Professional and scientific organizations to which Hobbs has been elected to membership or to office are the following:

He became editor of the Journal of Geology in 1909.


On June 23, 1896, he was married at Evanston, Illinois, to Mrs. Sara Kimball Sale, who died in 1940. They had one daughter, Winifred Sara Weston Hobbs, (b. 1899) who later became Mrs. Joseph Newhall Lincoln.

He died in Ann Arbor, MI on January 1, 1953, at the age of 88.[3]


  • Earthquakes: An Introduction to Seismic Geology (1907)
  • Characteristics of Existing Glaciers (1911)
  • Earth Features and their Meaning (1912).
  • The World War and Its Consequences (1919)
  • An Explorer-Scientist's Pilgrimage: the Autobiography of William Herbert Hobbs (1952).


External linksEdit