WMH Timeline

James Pollard Espy - The Storm King

James Pollard Espy (or “The Storm King”) (May 9 1785 – January 24 1860) was a U.S. meteorologist who proposed burning forests on the west coast of the United States of America to increase rainfall on the east coast. Espy developed a convection theory of storms, explaining it in 1836 before the American Philosophical Society and in 1840 before the French Académie des Sciences and the British Royal Society. His theory was published in 1840 as The Philosophy of Storms.

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