Colonel Alexander Ross Clarke, a mathematician and geodesist who worked at the Ordnance Survey, was the first man to determine the figure (size and shape) of the Earth. He was born in Reading in 1828 and spent most of his childhood in Jamaica. He joined the British army in 1847 and was transferred to the Ordnance Survey in Southampton in 1850. He lived at 21 Carlton Crescent from 1868 to 1881. He is commemorated by a blue plaque above the entrance to the building.

Alexander Ross Clarke

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Photograph, 1861

Newspaper clippings:

Plaque mystery solved at last - (Echo 30/12/1964)

Further reading:
A History of the Ordnance Survey, by W A Seymour, p139-146. (HS/pm)


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