Maxon, William R. (William Ralph), 1877-1948

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Biographical History

William Ralph Maxon was a botanist who worked primarily with ferns. He was born in Oneida, New York on February 27, 1877. He attended Syracuse University (1898), and went on to become an assistant at the New York Botanical Garden. He spent most of his career at the U.S. National Museum, working his way from temporary aide in cryptogamic botany to a position comparable to chairman of botany. During his career he conducted field work in Jamaica, Cuba, and Central America, and dramatically increased the fern specimen holdings of the Museum. He retired from the U.S. National Museum in 1946. William died in Terra Ceia, Florida, on February 25, 1948.


  • LCNA Control Number: no2009057016
  • IPNI ID: 6268-1
  • Washington Biologists' Field Club. “William Ralph Maxon.” Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, US Geological Survey. Retrieved October 8, 2013 from

Related entities

United States National Museum: He worked in the botany department of the US National Museum.

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