Maury Matthew Fontaine
Maury, Matthew Fontaine (1806-73), was born in Virginia, and in 1825 became a midshipman, and took part in a four years' voyage of exploration. In 1836 as lieutenant he took part in another exploring expedition. In 1839 an accident lamed him, and he was appointed to superintend the depots of charts and instruments. His special study was the laws of winds and currents, and he made a great collection of specially-arranged logbooks embodying observations on points which he bad brought to the notice of captains. We may trace to the initiative of his efforts the establishment of our own Meteorological Office. His Southern sympathies in the War of Secession brought him troubles, but he eventually returned to Virginia. His first published work was a 'Treatise on Navigation (1848), but his most widely-known work is the Physical Geography of the Sea (1855).