National Geographic : 1898 May
CAPTAIN CHARLES D. SIGSBEE, U. S. N. Captain Charles Dwight Sigsbee, U. S. N., whose portrait forms the frontispiece of this number of the magazine, was born July 16, 1845, in New York. He graduated from the Naval Academy in 1863 and served throughout the Civil War; was on board the Monongahela at the battle of Mobile bay, and in the Fort Fisher fights. In 1868 he was made a Lieutenant-Commander. In 1874 he was placed in command of the Blake, and during the succeeding four years was engaged in deep sea exploration in the Gulf of Mexico and the Gulf of Maine. During part of this time Prof. Alexander Agassiz was upon the Blake directing the deep-sea dredgings. Almost immediately after taking command of the Blake, Sigs bee instituted improvements in instruments for deep-sea sound ing, and virtually designed a new machine for that purpose, which has since been adopted all over the world. The results of the deep-sea soundings made by the Blake under his com mand were published as an appendix to the report of the U. S. Coast and Geodetic Survey for 1880, under the title " Deep Sea Sounding and Dredging. A Description and Discussion of the Methods and Appliances used on board the Coast and Geodetic Survey Steamer Blake." This work has proved valuable in many ways, especially with reference to the intricate problems involved in the study of the Gulf stream. The report is a com prehensive and standard treatise on deep-sea exploration. For several years prior to taking command of the Maine Cap tain Sigsbee was Hydrographer of the Navy Department. While thus in charge of the Hydrographic Office he developed many improvements tending to simplify and strengthen the data and material furnished the marine from both the practical and sci entific sides. During his detail in charge of the Hydrographic Office Captain Sigsbee was a member of the U. S. Board on Geo graphic Names. Captain Sigsbee's contributions to our knowledge of the sea bottom and its topography place him in the front rank of sci entific hydrographers. As a naval officer and an American the events of the past two months have shown what manner of man he is. H. G.