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John Wesley Powell
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    (March 24, 1834-September 23, 1902)
    Born in Mount Morris, New York
    Headed the Powell Geographic Expedition down the Green and Colorado Rivers (1869)
    Expedition was first to pass through the Grand Canyon
    Director of the US Geological Survey (1881-94)
    He attended three colleges without graduating.
    He married his first cousin.
    He filed for an army pension claiming 'total and permanent disability' just four years before rafting down the Grand Canyon.
    When photographing Native Americans, he would often insist that they wear fake headdresses for the pictures.
    He lost an arm during the Battle of Shiloh, and raw nerve endings in the arm would cause him pain for the rest of his life.
    He had a great curiosity about American Indian languages and believed that they should be allowed to live according to their own traditions.
    At a time when most scientific expeditions to the West used military escorts for security, he never even carried a gun.
    His 'The Exploration of the Colorado River and Its Canyons' was named the 4th best adventure book of all time by National Geographic.

Credit: C. Fishel

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