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Memorial for Paul Livingston Applin
(1891-1981)

George V. Cohee
5508 Namakagan Road. Bethesda. Maryland 20816

Paul Livingston Applin was born in Keene, New Hampshire, September 17, 1891. He died in Fort Worth, Texas, July 14, 1981. He received his A.B. degree at Dartmouth College in 1914. He was Yale Instructor at Dartmouth College in 1916. From 1943 until his death, he was a geologist with the U.S. Geological Survey.

Paul specialized in petroleum geology, structural geology, and the stratigraphy of Mesozoic rocks of the Gulf Coast. He was a, Fellow of the Geological Society of America and a member of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists.

He was working on plane-table geology for the Rio Bravo Oil Company in southeast Texas when he met Esther English Richards, a well-known paleontologist who was a specialist on Mesozoic stratigraphy of the Gulf Coast. Her father was the architect for Alcatraz Prison, which was begin built in San Francisco Bay at the time that Paul was courting her. Paul and Esther admired the chapel in the prison so much that they were married in it in 1923. Esther died at their home in Jackson, Mississippi, July 23, 1972.

Ralph E. Miller, who was Branch Chief for the Survey during an important part of the professional career of Paul and Esther stated that they were a pioneering team in the Eastern Gulf Coastal Plain. She was one of the first paleontologists to apply micropaleontology to oil-finding. Paul and Esther published jointly and separately on the stratigraphy of the area.

They published jointly such important papers as "The Comanche Series and Associated Rocks in the Subsurface in Central and South Florida" (1965, U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper No. 447) and "The Gulf Series in the Subsurface in Northern Florida and Southern Georgia" (1967, U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper No. 524G). Their papers were and are used extensively in the search for oil in the Gulf Coast Region.

Their son Paul L. Applin, Jr., who now lives in White Marsh, Virginia, wrote as follows, "I buried Mother and Dad's ashes together in the family plot in Keene, New Hampshire, and their monument reads 'Pioneers in Science— Partners in Love'."

Reproduced From:Geological Society of America Memorials, v. 13
Memorial for Paul Livingston Applin (full pdf version including a selected bibliography)

 

 

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