Geological survey of Wisconsin, Iowa, and Minnesota (1848-1849)

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The Geological Survey of Wisconsin, Iowa, and Minnesota was led by David Dale Owen, 1848 - 1849, to map and document the terrain and geology of the regions. The expedition was a continuation of Owen’s Chippewa Land District work of the previous year. Scientific collecting of flora and fauna occurred whenever possible, without interfering with the main objectives of the survey. Staff included B. C. Macy, Dr. J. G. Norwood (Assistant), Dr. Houghton, Dr. B. F. Shumard, and Fielding Meek. Dr. C. C. Parry collected botanical specimens and reported on the survey findings. Dr. Henry Pratten collected ornithological specimens during his work on the St. Peters. Other notable members of the team were John Evans, Charles Whittlesey, Henry Pratten, B. C. Macy, G. K. Warren, Richard Owen, and the St. Louis chemist Abram Litton. According to Owen's report, Parry made an effort to record information about which plants were part of the local "Indian diet" as well as their names in the local languages. The survey produced a map of the region including 750 miles north to south, and 350 miles east to west. The team also compiled information about mineral deposits found among the territory. Collections of botanical, ornithological, and paleontological specimens were also made.


Owen, David Dale. (1852). Report of a geological survey of Wisconsin, Iowa, and Minnesota; and incidentally of a portion of Nebraska Territory. Retrieved from

Date Range

1848 - 1849


  • Animals
  • Geology
  • Birds
  • Plants
  • Paleontology
  • Ornithology
  • Botany


  • Iowa
  • United States
  • Minnesota
  • Wisconsin


Expedition name