Geoscientist Robert Thorson Receives Historical Honor

Robert Thorson, a geoscientist, has been elected to the American Antiquarian Society. This is an extraordinary honor for a scientist, as it’s a primarily historical society.

Robert Thorson, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, is one of two geologists elected to the American Antiquarian Society this millennium. 

Thorson was chosen for his work on Anthropocene stone walls, public education, and geo-journalism, and joins only eight other geologists elected since the end of the 19th century.

Membership in the Society, which is at present 1039, is by election and is limited to 1250.

The society, located in Worcester, Massachusetts, doubles as a learned society and library which collects, preserves and houses an extensive archive of “what is now the United States from 1640-1876”. Founded in 1812, the society is recognized as the third oldest historical organization in the United States and the first to curate a collection that is national in scope. 

Thorson joins fourteen U.S. presidents who have been AAS members as well, in addition to notable historical actors such as as Daniel Webster, Henry Clay, Alexander Graham Bell, and more contemporary members such as Ken Burns, Doris Kearns Goodwin, Walter Cronkite and Henry Louis Gates.


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