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Special Presentation and Book Signing

Matthew Fontaine Maury, Father of Oceanography by John Grady 

Fredericksburg, VA – This spring the Fredericksburg Area Museum & Cultural Center is pleased to announce a special book signing and presentation by author John Grady. Mr. Grady will speak about his new biography Matthew Fontaine Maury, Father of Oceanography (McFarland, 2015) on Tuesday, March 24 at 6:00 PM. This book signing is free and open to the public, however RSVPs are required. Please RSVP to Tramia Jackson at or 540-371-3037 x400.

Known as the “Father of Oceanography” Matthew Fontaine Maury, was born near Fredericksburg, Virginia in 1806. He served as the Superintendent of Charts and Instruments in the United States Navy and later become the Commander of the Confederate Navy upon Virginia’s secession from the Union. Among his many accomplishment, Maury charted sea lanes and bested Great Britain’s admiralty in securing the fastest, safest routes to India and Australia. He helped bind the Old and New worlds with the laying of the transatlantic cable and he revolutionized warfare in perfecting electronically detonated mines.

Author John Grady served as managing editor of Navy Times and has been published in Naval History, the New York Times’ Disunion series, the Times’ collection of essays on the Civil War and the Civil War Monitor’s Front Line. He is a contributor to the Naval History and Heritage Command’s Civil War blog and lives in Fairfax, Virginia.

This book signing is part of programming for Expanding Fredericksburg’s Story which displays the 6th edition of Maury’s classic book Physical Geography of the Seas, signed and published in 1856. Expanding Fredericksburg’s Story is scheduled to open Tuesday, March 3, 2015. For more information on this exhibition, please contact the Museum at 540-371-3037, or visit us at The mission of the Fredericksburg Area Museum & Cultural Center is to collect, interpret, and present the history and culture of the Fredericksburg area in order to share with residents and visitors alike the stories of those who shaped the region and its role in the nation’s development.

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