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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 56.djvu/625

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SKETCH OF EDWARD ORTON.

tained the title of State Geologist till his death, although he had not been engaged in any active public work on the survey for a considerable time.

The Ohio State University having been established on the basis of the grants of land made to the States for colleges under the Morrill Land-Grant Act, Professor Orton was appointed its president and Professor of Geology. He discharged the duties of this office for eight years, or till 1881. But the executive work of the president's office was irksome to him, since it grew constantly heavier as the young college expanded, and therefore left him less and less time for teaching and research in geology. Being in a measure compelled to make a choice between the two fields of activity, he chose the less ambitious position, resigning the presidency, and assuming the position of Professor of Geology, which he retained for the remainder of his life. The geological building of the university is named after him—Orton Hall. Besides his work on the Geological Survey of Ohio and his participation in the composition of its reports. Professor Orton prepared, for the Eighth Annual Report of the United States Geological Survey, a paper on the New Oil and Gas Fields of Ohio and Indiana, and another, only recently published in the Nineteenth Annual Report of the United States Survey, on the Rock Waters of Ohio; a volume for the Geological Survey of Kentucky on the Petroliferous Production of the Western Part of the State, published in 1891; and a report on petroliferous productions which is in process of publication by the Geological Survey of New York.

In the paper on the Oil and Gas Fields of Ohio and Indiana the discovery of the supply of those materials, the great value of which was only realized in 1884 and afterward, is spoken of as being more surprising and anomalous than any similar discovery that had preceded it, and as a development which experts were hardly more prepared for than others. The oil and gas derived from the Trenton limestone in certain parts of these States were found to differ from the oil and gas in the Pennsylvania wells in chemical composition and physical properties, in the horizons from which they were obtained, in the structural features of the rocks associated with their production, and, most of all, in the kind of rock that produced them. "No facts more unexpected have ever been brought to light in connection with the geology of this country than those with which we are now becoming acquainted." Professor Orton's paper, which fills one hundred and eighty of the large pages of the report of the Geological Survey, includes a sketch of the history of the discovery to July, 1887, when it was prepared; a designation of what was known in regard to the geological scale and geological struc-