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Clarence King
Please vote to return to collections (Voting Results will appear on Right Sidebar).
    (January 6, 1842-December 24, 1901)
    Born in Newport, Rhode Island
    First director of the US Geological Survey (1879-81)
    Wrote 'Mountaineering in the Sierra Nevada' (1872) and 'Systematic Geology' (1878)
    Married African-American nurse Ada Copeland, claiming that he was a black Pullman porter named James Todd
    Subject of the biography 'Passing Strange: A Gilded Age Tale of Love and Deception Across the Color Line' (2009)
    With his blue eyes and fair skin, he should have been even less convincing as a black man than C. Thomas Howell in 'Soul Man.'
    He did not reveal his true identity to Ada until he was on his deathbed.
    His and Ada's two daughters 'passed' for white, marrying into white families, while their three sons were declared 'colored' when they were drafted during WWI and sent into all-black units.
    He exposed a fraudulent diamond mine in Nevada, preventing a speculative bubble and prompting one newspaper to editorialize, 'We have escaped, thanks to God and Clarence King, a great financial calamity.'
    Former Secretary of State John Hay called him the 'best and brightest man of his generation.'
    He said he dreamed of a future 'when there are no more Irish or Germans, negroes and English, but only Americans belonging to one defined American race.'
    He illustrated the idiocy of anti-miscegenation laws and the 'one drop' rule.

Credit: C. Fishel

    For 2019, as of last week, Out of 4 Votes: 50.0% Annoying
    In 2018, Out of 1 Votes: 0% Annoying
    In 2017, Out of 2 Votes: 50.0% Annoying
    In 2016, Out of 5 Votes: 80.0% Annoying
    In 2015, Out of 4 Votes: 25.00% Annoying
    In 2014, Out of 6 Votes: 50.0% Annoying
    In 2013, Out of 7 Votes: 71.43% Annoying
    In 2012, Out of 6 Votes: 66.67% Annoying
    In 2011, Out of 9 Votes: 55.56% Annoying
    In 2010, Out of 6 Votes: 50.0% Annoying
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