Davis, William Morris, 1850–1934, American geographer, geologist, and teacher, b. Philadelphia; B.S. Harvard, 1869. He founded (1904) the Association of American Geographers and served three terms as its president. He was on the Harvard faculty from 1879 to 1912 and was visiting professor at the Univ. of Berlin (1908–9) and at the Sorbonne (1911–12). In 1912 he led a transcontinental excursion across the United States sponsored by the American Geographical Society. Davis is responsible for enlarging the scope and systematizing the study of geography; his methods of description and analysis and his use of maps and block diagrams revolutionized the teaching of geography. His major works include The Coral Reef Problem (1928) and Geographical Essays (1909, repr. 1954).
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