Abigail McDaniel & Victoria Gilpin present:

James Clerk Maxwell

A Mathematician & Physicist

Born: June 13, 1831, Edinburgh, United Kingdom

Maxwell was born into a very wealthy family. His father's name was John Clerk Maxwell and his mother was  Mrs. Frances Maxwell. She died when he was only eight years old.


Peterhouse, Cambridge

University of Edinburgh

Edinburgh Academy

Trinity College, Cambridge

University of Cambridge

James married Katherine Mary Dewar (m. 1858–1879).

Died: November 5, 1879, Cambridge, United Kingdom

Notable Achievements 

His research in kinetics and electricity laid the foundations for modern Quantum mechanics and special relativity.

Rumford Medal

Maxwell discovered how to make the first colored picture only using the colors blue, red, and green.

What Maxwell Did For Us

Maxwell is responsible for your mobile phone.

By the 1860s he had gathered together the laws of electricity and magnetism and added one of his own, complete set is known as Maxwell's Equations. His equation is used for radio waves, microwaves, light, x-rays and many more different things.

"I maintain that all the evil influences that I can trace have been internal and not external, you know what I mean—that I have the capacity of being more wicked than any example that man could set me, and that if I escape, it is only by God's grace helping me to get rid of myself, partially in science, more completely in society, — but not perfectly except by committing myself to God as the instrument of His will, not doubtfully, but in the certain hope that that Will will be plain enough at the proper time. Nevertheless, you see things from the outside directly, and I only by reflexion, so I hope that you will not tell me you have little fault to find with me, without finding that little and communicating it."

~Letter to Rev. C. B. Tayler ( 8 July 1853) in Ch. 6 : Undergraduate Life At Cambridge October 1850 to January 1854 — ÆT. 19-22, p. 189

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Public - 9/19/16, 4:25 PM