Published Scientific Illustrations

Edward Hitchcock title page, "Final Report on the Geology of Massachusetts," 1841<br />

In 1844, Edward Hitchcock published his seminal "Final Report on the Geology of Massachusetts" at the request of the Massachusetts State Legislature. Not credited in his report is his wife, Orra White, who provided many of the key illustrations in the text.

Edward Hitchcock draft, "The Religion of Geology and its Connected Sciences Illustrated," lectures 1-5

Although it may seem surprising that Edward would not credit his wife for her contributions to his published success, it is possible that Orra's work remained nameless at her request.

InĀ The Religion of Geology and its Connected Sciences, Edward's 1851 book of lectures on science and Christianity, he dedicates the work to "to my beloved wife," and gives her some well-deserved recognition, as well as sheds some light on why her previous work was contributed anonymously:

... To your kindness and self-denying labors I have been mainly indebted for the ability and leisure to give any successful attention to scientific pursuits...

... Furthermore, while I have described scientific facts with the pen only, how much more vividly have they been portrayed by your pencil! And it is peculiarly appropriate that your name should be associated with mine in any literary effort where the theme is geology; since your artistic skill has done more than my voice to render that science attractive to the young men whom I have instructed. I love especially to connect your name with an effort to defend and illustrate that religion which I am sure is dearer to you than everything else. I know that you would forbit this public allusion to your labors and sacrifices, did I not send it forth to the world before it meets your eye...

... Through many checkered scenes have we passed together, both on the land and the sea, at home and in foreign countries; and now the voyage of life is almost ended [...] But there are ties which death cannot break; and we indulge the hope that by them we shall be linked together and to the throne of God through eternal ages.

In life and death I abide

Your affectionate husband,

Edward Hitchcock.

The Marriage of True Minds
Published Scientific Illustrations