Wilson Popenoe

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Frederick Wilson Popenoe
Born (1892-03-09)March 9, 1892
Topeka, Kansas
Died June 20, 1975 (1975-06-21) (aged 83)
Antigua Guatemala, Guatemala
Occupation botanist, agronomist

Frederick Wilson Popenoe (March 9, 1892 – June 20, 1975) son of Fred O. Popenoe and brother of Paul Popenoe, was a graduate of Pomona College and a United States Department of Agriculture employee and plant explorer. From 1916 to 1924 Popenoe explored Latin America to look for new strains of avocados. He reported his adventures to the National Geographic Society. He went to work for the U.S. Department of Agriculture in 1913 and became the chief agronomist of the United Fruit Company in 1925.[1][2]

While working for the United Fruit Company, he became the first director of the Panamerican Agricultural School, Zamorano in Honduras. Popenoe won numerous awards an received three honorary doctorates, from: Universidad Mayor de San Marcos in Lima, Peru; Pomona College, now California State Polytechnic University, Pomona; and the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida.[3][4]

He was married to the British archeologist Dorothy Popenoe, who was involved in excavation of the Playa de los Muertos in Honduras.


  1. ^ Belasco, Warren and Philip Scranton (2006). Food Nations: Selling Taste in Consumer Societies. Routledge. pp. 136–137. ISBN 0-415-93077-4. 
  2. ^ Rosengarten, Jr., Frederick (Jul 1992). "Wilson, Popenoe - agricultural explorer, educator, and friend of Latin America". Agricultural History. 66 (3): 105. 
  3. ^ "Wilson Popenoe (1892-1975)". Zamorano.edu. Retrieved 9 October 2014. 
  4. ^ "Dr. Wilson Popenoe Death Reported". Star-News (Pasadena, California) (A-8). June 24, 1975. 

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