Henry Arnold Karo
|Henry Arnold Karo|
|then-Rear Admiral H. Arnold Karo|
|5th Director, USC&GS|
|Preceded by||Robert Francis Anthony Studds|
|Succeeded by||James C. Tison, Jr.|
December 24, 1903|
|Died||May 23, 1986
Georgetown, Washington, D.C.
United States Army
|Years of service||1923–1942 (NOAA)
|Rank|| Vice Admiral (NOAA)
|Unit||C&G Survey Corps (1923–1942)
Army Air Corps (1942–1945)
C&G Survey Corps (1945–1965)
ESSA Corps (1965–1967)
|Battles/wars||World War II|
Henry Arnold Karo (December 24, 1903 – May 23, 1986) was a vice admiral in the former U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey Corps, which is today known as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Commissioned Officer Corps. Vice Admiral Karo spent most of his working career in the U.S. National Geodetic Survey, which provides coastal maps and charts for the nation. He rose through the organization's bureaucracy to become the next to last director of the survey.
Karo had been involved in the survey since 1923, but the advent of World War II forced him to take on other duties. In this period, he rose to the rank of rear admiral. At war's end, he returned to his work with the survey team.
World War II
Karo was transferred from the survey to the Army Air Forces in World War II, when he was commanding officer of the Air Force Aeronautical Chart Center in St. Louis. Initially, he was given the Army rank of Major, and was promoted to Colonel during this period; but Karo returned to the survey as with the Rank of Rear Admiral (see photo caption) at the end of the war.
US Coast and Geodetic Survey
President Dwight Eisenhower named Rear Admiral Karo to succeed Rear Admiral Robert Studds as head of the survey in 1955. The recess appointment was subsequently made permanent by Senate confirmation.
From 1955 through 1965, Karo directed the survey. In 1957, Karo oversaw an organization with a $10-million budget, 17 ships and 2,000 employees. In that same year, the survey's publications list offered over 2,000 aerial and nautical maps and guides; and over 44-million of its documents were issued.
Establishing the US standard mile
A mile is a unit of length, usually used to measure distance; however, the measurement varied amongst a number of national systems. There were (and remain today) some slight differences depending on whether a mile is construed in terms of Imperial units, United States customary units, or Norwegian/Swedish mil. In the 1950s, Karo headed the project which established the U.S. survey mile (also known as U.S. statute mile) of 5,280 survey feet which is slightly longer at approximately 1,609.347 219 meters (1 international mile is exactly 0.999 998 survey mile).
He was promoted to Vice Admiral just before he left USC&GS to help create a new government agency which would eventually merge the survey with two other formerly independent agencies.
Environmental Science Services Administration
From 1965 until his retirement in 1967, he was the deputy administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's predecessor agency, the Environmental Science Services Administration.
- "Vice Adm. H. Karo, 82, Dies; Headed U.S. Geodetic Survey," New York Times. May 30, 1986.
- "Karo Heads Geodetic Survey," New York Times. August 14, 1955.
- "2 Appointments Approved," New York Times. July 27, 1956.
- "Geodectic Survey on Job 150 Years; U.S. Agency Marks Birthday Today--Jefferson Signed Bill Creating Service," New York Times. February 10, 1957.
- Astin, V. et al. (1959). Refinement of values for the yard and the pound
- Clark, Evert. "Johnson to Merge 3 Nature Agencies; Johnson Submits 3-Agency Merger," New York Times. May 14, 1965.
- Astin, V. and H. Arnold Karo. (1959). Refinement of values for the yard and the pound, Washington DC: National Bureau of Standards, republished on National Geodetic Survey web site and the Federal Register (Doc. 59-5442, Filed, June 30, 1959, 8:45 a.m.)
- Karo, H. Arnold. "New Nautical Charting Methods Called an Aid to Yachting Safety," New York Times. January 15, 1956.
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration: Coast & Geodetic Survey Biographies, Adm. Karo (1966).