Matthew Fountaine Maury (1806-1873)

U.S. Naval officer and oceanographer who was the founder of the U.S. Naval Observatory; Confederate Head of Coast, harbour and river defences; Inventor of a torpedo; pioneer of wind and current charts.

The American Matthew F. Maury, who was born in 1806, joined the U.S. Navy in 1825 where he soon developed an interest for hydrography. As a result of this interest wrote a report entitled On the Navigation of Cape Horn which was published In 1834.

Maury was appointed superintendent of the U.S. Navy's Hydrographical Office in Washington after having injured a leg in 1839 and two years later of the Naval Obeservatory.

His analysis of thousands of log books and reports enabled him to publish recommendations for the most effective sea route to take advantage of winds and currents.

Published works:

Updated 1998-02-08 by Lars Bruzelius

Sjöhistoriska Samfundet | The Maritime History Virtual Archives | Biography.

Copyright © 1996 Lars Bruzelius.