This chapter examines Trail’s field science practices, and the ways in which he and his colleagues sought to create a field science institution out of the Amazon Steam Navigation Company survey, for which they worked. Trail’s practices, as well as the ways he understood his work and experiences, were molded by the field science of his Amazonian naturalist predecessors, Alfred Russel Wallace, Henry Walter Bates, Richard Spruce and Louis Agassiz. Trail walked the paths they walked and met local people who had worked with them; their books were never far from hand. Trail also steamed through the Amazon when it had one of the most diverse human populations on earth, was the object of fierce international rivalry and tied into global networks. Thus, Trail’s field science practices, a new case study of Amazonian field science, are situated in this wider historical context.
|Title of host publication||Understanding Field Science Institutions|
|Editors||Helena Ekerholm, Karl Grandin, Christer Nordlund , Patience Schell|
|Place of Publication||Sagamore Beach, MA|
|Publisher||Science History Publications/USA|
|Number of pages||32|
|Publication status||Published - 2017|
Schell, P. A. (2017). James Trail and Nineteenth-Century Amazonian Field Science. In H. Ekerholm, K. Grandin, C. Nordlund , & P. Schell (Eds.), Understanding Field Science Institutions (pp. 99-131). Sagamore Beach, MA: Science History Publications/USA.