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American National Biography Online Morgan, Ann Haven (6 May 1882-5 June 1966), zoologist and ecologist, was born in Waterford, Connecticut, the daughter of Stanley Griswold Morgan and Julia Douglass. Ann Morgan, who was christened Anna, grew up in Waterford, where she explored the area's forests and streams, developing an early interest in biology. She attended the Williams Memorial Institute at New London. In 1902 Morgan began studies at Wellesley College but transferred two years later to Cornell University, a campus with fewer restrictions for female students. Morgan completed an undergraduate zoology degree in 1906 and was hired as an assistant and instructor at Mount Holyoke College. By 1909 she had returned to Cornell, where she studied at the Limnological Laboratory with James G. Needham, who had admired Morgan before she was his student, submitting her name in 1908 for membership to the Entomological Society, to which she was accepted. Morgan was inspired by Needham, whom she claimed "helped her to see things in the water," as she studied the aquatic biology of insects. An assistant and instructor, Morgan was nicknamed "Mayfly" Morgan by her freshmen lab students because of her dissertation "A Contribution to the Biology of May-flies." She changed her legal name to Ann on this work, which earned her a Ph.D. from Cornell in 1912 and was published in the Annals of the Entomological Society of America in 1913. Morgan agreed to teach at Mount Holyoke and quickly advanced through the ranks to chair of the Department of Zoology in 1916 and full professor by 1918. She focused on reforming the science curriculum at Mount Holyoke and throughout the United States, urging her colleagues at other institutions to integrate an ecological perspective into courses. Defining herself as a "general zoologist," not a specialist, Morgan taught courses on water and winter biology (the study of how wildlife survives, copes, and adapts during severe weather and how it readjusts in the spring), emphasizing conservation to her students. She took her classes on field trips to conduct primary observations and research, as stressed by her mentor, Mount Holyoke biologist Cornelia Clapp. Through her teaching, Morgan intrigued many talented women in the field of zoology. Beginning in 1918 Morgan taught and researched echinoderms at the Marine Biological Laboratory at Woods Hole, Massachusetts, and returned for several summers during the early 1920s. She pursued investigations on William Beebe's preserve at the Tropical Laboratory at Kartabo, British Guiana, in 1926. Morgan was also a visiting fellow at Harvard and Yale Universities and was judged one of a group of "master grantswomen" at Mount Holyoke, securing research funds from the National Academy of Sciences, National Research Council, and Rockefeller Foundation. Morgan was starred in three editions of American Men of Science, designating her as one of a select group of scientists, most of whom were male. Morgan published three books, all deemed zoological classics. The first, Field Book of Ponds and Streams: An Introduction to the Life of Fresh Water (1930), was a popular guide lauded as an "angler's favorite" by amateur naturalists. Explaining how to study and collect stream and pond specimens, Morgan's text emphasized the role of aquatic insects in the ecosystem. "This book began in ponds where frogs sat on the lily-pads and by swift brooks from which mayflies flew forth at twilight," she wrote. "I hope that it may be a guide into the vividness and variety of their ways" (p. vii). She illustrated her text with her own drawings and photographs, describing algae, liverworts, mosses, leeches, crustaceans, snails, mussels, salamanders, turtles, and snakes. She credited her colleagues for her zoological insights, especially Clapp's enthusiasm and Needham, who "first showed me how to look for things in the water." Morgan's Field Book of Animals in Winter (1939), written for both amateurs and professionals, analyzed the "ways in which animals meet the crises and depressions of winter." Morgan presented survival strategies, such as hibernation and migration. Considering it "invigorating" to explore how insects, mammals, birds, amphibians, fish, and reptiles secured shelter and food and endured hardships, Morgan admired their "persistence which must hearten any human being to contemplate." She assisted the Encyclopedia Britannica in making an educational movie about her book and published related articles in Anatomical Record. Morgan retired in 1947, enabling her to research and write other than at the holidays and "odd hours" that had been her creative time while teaching. She became increasingly interested in conservation and the environment. A mentor to Elizabeth Adams, a Mount Holyoke zoologist, Morgan invited Adams to travel throughout the western United States with her to assess projects for the National Commission on Policies in Conservation Education. At home, Morgan planned conservation projects for the Connecticut River valley and taught summer workshops to teachers, sharing her knowledge and enthusiasm for conservation and ecology. She urged educators to incorporate conservation topics in the science curricula, writing about her efforts in the Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly. When not teaching, she was happiest wading in "some particularly oozy mudhole" to snare specimens. In Morgan's third book, Kinships of Animals and Man: A Textbook of Animal Biology (1955), she observed that "humanity is facing two very old problems, living with itself and living with its natural surroundings. . . . Conservation is one way of working out these problems, an appreciation and intelligent care of living things and their environment. It is applied Ecology" (p. 792). She outlined animal behavior, revealing how animals cooperate and compete and urging humans to preserve the environment and coexist with wildlife. "Now that the wilderness is almost gone, we are beginning to be lonesome for it," she warned. "We shall keep a refuge in our minds if we conserve the remnants" (p. 792). Used as a basic zoology textbook, Morgan's treatise enabled the public to access and understand conservation topics. A "true pioneer in the taxonomy and biology of mayflies" (Alexander, p. 1), Morgan was also lauded as a science educator both in the classroom and as an author. Her promotion of local and global conservation and her lucid analysis of environmental threats to natural habitats alerted both professional and amateur naturalists to protect ecological concerns, mobilizing the conservation movement. Suffering from stomach cancer, Morgan, who never married, died in South Hadley, Massachusetts. Bibliography Morgan's manuscripts and papers are available at Mount Holyoke College's Williston Library and the Cornell University Archives. A biographical account is Charles P. Alexander, "Ann Haven Morgan, 1882-1966," Eatonia 8 (15 Feb. 1967): 1-3. Morgan's career is discussed in Marcia M. Bonta, Women in the Field: America's Pioneering Women Naturalists (1991), and Margaret W. Rossiter, Women Scientists in America: Struggles and Strategies to 1940 (1982). An obituary is in the New York Times, 6 June 1966. Elizabeth D. Schafer Citation: Elizabeth D. Schafer. "Morgan, Ann Haven"; http://www.anb.org/articles/13/13-01171.html; American National Biography Online Feb. 2000. Access Date: Copyright (c) 2000 American Council of Learned Societies. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. From American National Biography, published by Oxford University Press, Inc., copyright 2000 American Council of Learned Societies. Further information is available at http://www.anb.org.