The United States Geological Survey was established on March 3,
1879, just a few hours before the mandatory close of the final
session of the 45th Congress, when President Rutherford B. Hayes
signed the bill appropriating money for sundry civil expenses of
the Federal Government for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 1879.
The USGS is proud of its outstanding history of public service
and scientific advances. USGS scientists pioneered hydrologic techniques
for gaging the discharge in rivers and streams and modeling the
flow of complex ground-water systems. The astronauts who landed
on the Moon in 1969 were trained in geology by the USGS.
Innovative ventures with the private sector have given the world
access to digital images of neighborhoods and communities in one
of the largest data sets ever made available online.
Modern-day understanding of the formation and location of energy
and mineral resource deposits is rooted in fundamental scientific
breakthroughs by USGS scientists.
USGS biologists revolutionized thinking about managing wildlife
resources, which has provided a sound scientific basis that lets
waterfowl conservation and recreational hunting work in tandem
as adaptive management, not as conflicting interests.
The following links provide historical information about the establishment
of the USGS, the Directors of the USGS, and our "virtual" museum
showing historical artifacts owned by the organization: