As a young boy, Alexander collected and labeled plants,
shells, and insects. His desire to become a scientific explorer
was cemented by his friendship in college with Georg Forster, who
had accompanied his father on Captain James Cook’s voyage to
the Pacific. Humboldt eventually became known as an naturalist,
ethnologist, and travel writer.
The breadth of Alexander Humboldt's interests was huge; not all of
them, and not all of his accomplishments, are described here. In
his work Cosmos, he attempted to unify the whole of
natural science and geography.
While I worked on my Ph.D. dissertation, I lived at my
parent’s home at 100 North Main Street in Fortuna,
California. Across the fence was Highway 101, the railroad track,
and the broad, graveled expanse of the Eel River.
See also in The book of science:
You can read more about Humboldt and his voyage: