About John Thomas Curtis: American ecologist and botanist (1913 - 1961) | Biography, Facts, Career, Life
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John Thomas Curtis
American ecologist and botanist

John Thomas Curtis

John Thomas Curtis
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro American ecologist and botanist
A.K.A. J.T.Curtis
Was Scientist Botanist Ecologist Biologist Mycologist
From United States of America
Field Biology Science
Gender male
Birth 20 September 1913, Waukesha, Waukesha County, Wisconsin, USA
Death 7 June 1961 (aged 47 years)
Star sign Virgo
University of Wisconsin–Madison Doctor of Philosophy (-1937)
John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship  
The details (from wikipedia)


John Thomas Curtis (September 20, 1913 – June 7, 1961) was an American botanist and plant ecologist. He is particularly known for his lasting contribution to the development of numerical methods in ecology. Together with J. Roger Bray, he developed the method of polar ordination (now known as Bray-Curtis ordination) with its inherent distance measure, the Bray-Curtis dissimilarity.

Curtis completed his Ph.D. in botany at the University of Wisconsin in 1937. He remained affiliated with that university for the remainder of his career, except through 1942–1945, when he served as research director of the Société Haïtiano-Américaine de Développement Agricole. Both in 1942 and in 1956, he was awarded Guggenheim Fellowships. In 1951 he was made full professor of botany at the University of Wisconsin.

The collective efforts of Curtis and the thirty-nine Ph.D. students that he managed to supervise during his relatively short career, resulted in the work ‘’’The Vegetation of Wisconsin: An Ordination of Plant Communities, published 1959. This book remains one of the important contributions to the field of plant ecology during the twentieth century, and spawned the Wisconsin School of North American plant ecology.

He was also a "well-known contributor" to the Bulletin of the American Orchid Society.

Selected scientific works

  • A study of relic Wisconsin prairies by the species-presence method (with H. C. Greene). Ecology, 30 (1): 83–92. 1949. Full text
  • The interrelations of certain analytic and synthetic phytosociological characters (with Robert P. McIntosh). Ecology, 31 (3): 434–455. 1950. Full text
  • An upland forest continuum in the prairie-forest border region of Wisconsin (with Robert P. McIntosh). Ecology, 32 (3): 476–496. 1951. Full text
  • An ordination of the upland forest communities of Southern Wisconsin (with J. Roger Bray). Ecological Monographs 27 (4): 325–349. 1957. Full text
  • The Vegetation of Wisconsin: An Ordination of Plant Communities. University of Wisconsin Press, Madison. 1959.
The contents of this page are sourced from Wikipedia article on 14 Jul 2020. The contents are available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license.
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