Wax Engraving and Its Influence on Cartography and Maps as Prints in the Italian Renaissance: Makers, Distributors &
Consumers, as well as many book chapters, including important chapters in The History of Cartography. He also edited such well-known compilations as
Five Centuries of Map Printing and Art and Cartography: Six Historical
In Memoriam: Robert H. Fuson (1927-2004)
Robert Fuson, a long-time member of the Society for the History of Discoveries, died at age 77 on October 4, 2004 of melanoma in Temple Terrace, FL. He was a geographer with strong interests in the Caribbean and Central America where he conducted considerable field work (he wrote and spoke Spanish fluently); he was the founding chairman of the geography-anthropology department at the University of South Florida in Tampa in 1960; he wrote about trains and he was an authority on Mayan Indian civilization, especially in their method of establishing astronomically relevant ceremonial sites; he was
|playing both the saxophone and clarinet; he was an avid stamp collector; he published in Playboy Magazine; and he was an award-winning author of books on exploration and discovery. Indeed, he was a scholar of polymathic interests.
Born in Bloomington, Indiana in 1927, the son of an architect, he served in both the army and navy in World War II. During the Korean War he held a commission in the U.S. Air Force. After World War II, Bob attended Indiana University and graduated in 1949. He then enrolled at Florida State University to study geography (MA – 1951). In Tallahassee, he met and married Amelia Fernandez, who was his wife (and greatest supporter) for 52 years. Bob earned the Ph.D. at Louisiana State University in 1958, with his doctoral dissertation being a study of human activity in the tropical savanna of Panama.
Fuson became interested in the 1492 Columbus landfall while at LSU in the 1950s, and remained a player in the controversy for decades. His book, The Log of Christopher Columbus (International Marine Publishing, 1987), which he translated, won the Book of the Year award from the Library Journal, and the Elliott Montroll Special Award from the New York Academy of Sciences. Because of his authority, he appeared on Good Morning, America and the A & E Biography series. He authored “The Diario de Colón: A Legacy of Poor Transcription, Translation, and Interpretation” for the special issue on the Columbus landfall in volume 15 of Terrae Incognitae.
Two other important books with discovery themes are Legendary Islands of the Ocean Sea (Pineapple Press, 1995), and Juan Ponce de Léon and the Spanish Discovery of Puerto Rico and Florida (McDonald & Woodward, 2000). Early in his career, he wrote several geography texts, and his Fundamental Place-Name Geography (1970) is now in its 9th edition.
Bob is survived by his wife Amelia, son Robin Fuson who resides in the Tampa area, daughter Karen Buchsbaum of Miami, Florida, and grand-daughters Lindsey and Victoria Fuson, and Ashley Buchsbaum.
Sanford H. Bederman
Click for Page 1
Society for the History of Discoveries home page
All Original Material, Translations and HTML Coding Copyright © The Society for the History of Discoveries 1999 - 2005. All rights reserved.