Many leading biologists of the early twentieth century studied at the Johns Hopkins University, founded in 1876. William Keith Brooks led studies of zoology, with Henry Newell Martin teaching physiology. The students, including luminaries such as Wilson, Edwin Grant Conklin, Thomas Hunt Morgan, and Ross Granville Harrison, also played leading roles during the summers at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, established the new Journal of Experimental Zoology, and went on to set up successful experimental biology programs at Princeton, Columbia, and Yale, respectively. The Johns Hopkins University PhD program attracted students in a new generation who sought to become professional biologists, a career that was just becoming a viable option in the late nineteenth century.
Wilson attended Johns Hopkins on a fellowship, and was one of the first graduate students. The university had only opened two years before his arrival in 1878. While a graduate student, Wilson began his study of invertebrate embryology, with a close focus on cell division.
Early Life and Education
- Allen, Garland E. “Wilson, Edmund Beecher.” Dictionary of Scientific Biography 14: 423–6.
- Maienschein, Jane, "Edmund Beecher Wilson (1856-1939)". Embryo Project Encyclopedia (2013-08-05). ISSN: 1940-5030 http://embryo.asu.edu/handle/10776/6044. embryo.asu.edu/pages/edmund-beecher-wilson-1856-1939.
- Morgan, Thomas Hunt. 1941. “Biographical Memoir of Edmund Beecher Wilson, 1856–1939,” National Academy of Sciences Biographical Memoirs 21: 315–42.
The Johns Hopkins University
- Moore, John A. 1987. "Edmund Beecher Wilson, Class of '81". American Zoologist 27(3): 785-796.
The Stazione Zoologica in Naples and Music
- Groeben, Christiane. 1985. "Anton Dohrn--The Statesman of Darwinism: To commemorate the 75th anniversary of the death of Anton Dohrn". Biological Bulletin 168: 4-25. www.biolbull.org/content/168/3S/4.full.pdf+html.
- Maienschein, Jane. 1985. "First impressions: American biologists at Naples". Biological Bulletin 168: 187-191. www.biolbull.org/content/168/3S/187.full.pdf+html.
- Fischer, Antje HL et al. (2012). “The normal development of Platynereis dumerilii (Nereididae, Annelida).” Frontiers in Zoology 7(31): 1-39.
- Gilbert, Scott. (2014). Developmental Biology, 10th edition. Sunderland, MA: Sinauer Associates Inc Publishers.
- MacCord, Kate, "Germ Layers". Embryo Project Encyclopedia (2013-09-17). ISSN: 1940-5030 http://embryo.asu.edu/handle/10776/6273.
- Maienschein, Jane. (1991). Transforming Traditions in American Biology, 1880-1915. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press.
- Pearse, Vicki, John Pearse, Mildred Buchsbaum & Ralph Buchsbaum. (1987). Living Invertebrates. Pacific Grove, CA: The Boxwood Press.
- Seaver, Elaine C. (2014). “Variation in spiralian development: insights from polychaetes.” Int. J. Dev. Biol 58: 457-467.
- Sedgwick, William T. & Edmund B. Wilson. (1895). An Introduction to General Biology. New York: H. Holt.
- Wilson, Edmund B. (1892). “The Cell-Lineage of Nereis: A Contribution to the Cytogeny of the Annelid Body.” Journal of Morphology 6(3): 361-481.