William Wallace Smith Bliss Photo

William Wallace Smith Bliss

Born: Aug 17, 1815

Death: Aug 5, 1853

Birthplace: New York

Nationality: United States

William Wallace Smith Bliss

Date of Birth : Aug 17, 1815
Date of Death : Aug 5, 1853
Birth Place : New York

William Wallace Smith Bliss was a United States Army officer and mathematics professor. A gifted mathematician, he taught at West Point and also served as a line officer. He received an A.M. from Dartmouth College in 1848. In December 1848 Bliss married Mary Elizabeth Taylor, youngest daughter of the newly elected US President Zachary Taylor, whom he would serve as Presidential Secretary. Five years later Bliss contracted yellow fever in New Orleans and died at the age of 37. Having become interested in the various Native American tribes, Bliss learned a number of their languages and studied their cultures. He was a member of the Royal Society of Northern Antiquaries of Copenhagen, Denmark, and an Honorary Member of the American Ethnological Society. Gifted at languages, he was fluent in at least thirteen.

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