Otto Hilgard Tittmann

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Otto Hilgard Tittmann
Superintendent of the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey
In office
December 1, 1900 – April 24, 1914
Preceded byHenry Smith Pritchett
Succeeded byErnest Lester Jones
Personal details
Born(1850-08-20)August 20, 1850
Belleville, Illinois
DiedFebruary 14, 1938(1938-02-14) (aged 87)
Leesburg, Virginia
ParentsEdward Tittmann, Rosa Hilgard
Known forCo-founder of the National Geographic Society

Otto Hilgard Tittmann (August 20, 1850 – August 21[1], 1938) was an American geodesist, geographer, and astronomer of German descent.


Tittmann was born in 1850, in Belleville, Illinois[2] to revolutionary parents fleeing the aftermath of the 1848 revolutions.[3] He attended school in St. Louis, and in 1867 joined the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey.[2] In 1874 he was assistant astronomer in Japan to view the transit of Venus, and from 1889 until 1893 he was in charge of weights and measures. In 1888 he co-founded the National Geographic Society, and from 1895 until 1900 he was assistant in charge of the US Coast and Geodetic Survey. From 1900 until 1915 he was Superintendent of the Survey, and from 1915 until 1919 he was president of the National Geographic Society. He died in Leesburg, Virginia, in 1938.


  1. ^ "Dr. Otto Tittmann Dies in Virginia". St. Louis Post Dispatch. 1938. Retrieved August 27, 2018.
  2. ^ a b "NOAA History - Profiles in Time/C&GS Biographies - Dr. Otto Hilgard Tittmann".
  3. ^ Hunter, Cathy; Hunter, Cathy (30 November 2012). "A Gallant Gentleman, an Ideal Friend". National Geographic Society (blogs).

External links[edit]

Government offices
Preceded by
Henry Smith Pritchett
Superintendent, United States Coast and Geodetic Survey
Succeeded by
Ernest Lester Jones