The papers of Wheeler J. North, Caltech alumnus (BS, biology, 1950; BS, electrical engineering, 1944) and Professor of Environmental
Engineering, 1963-1992. The papers include correspondence and memos, data books, proposals and reports, and miscellaneous
printed matter and media relating to his career in marine biology and ecology, with emphasis on the kelp beds of California.
Wheeler J. North, Caltech alumnus and Professor of Environmental Engineering, 1963-1992, was a marine biologist and ecologist
as well as a pioneer in scientific SCUBA diving. He was born in 1922 in San Francisco and spent his childhood in Mexico and
La Jolla, California. After attending Caltech as an undergraduate (BS, engineering, 1944), he joined the army for the US occupation
of Japan, during which time he became interested in biology. After returning to Caltech for a second degree (BS, biology,
1950), he entered graduate school at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, where he received his PhD in 1953. In the following
years he remained at Scripps, beginning a long-term study of giant kelp and becoming an expert SCUBA diver. He became an authority
on kelp and the renewal of kelp beds of the California coast, as well as on marine resources and biomass. In 1963 he was appointed
professor at Caltech, where he taught marine ecology and continued his kelp studies. Wheeler North died in 2002.
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