1834 – Born on the 24th of March in Mount Morris, New York.
1830 – Had emigrated to the US from Shrewsbury, England.
1855 – He spent four months walking across Wisconsin.
1856 – He rowed the Mississippi from St. Anthony to the sea.
1857 – He rowed down the Ohio River from Pittsburgh to St. Louis.
1858 – Down the Illinois River, then up the Mississippi and the Des Moines River to central Iowa.
1859 – He was elected to the Illinois Natural History Society.
1862 – He married Emma Dean.
1867 – He led a series of expeditions into the Rocky Mountains and around the Green and Colorado rivers.
1869 – He set out to explore the Colorado and the Grand Canyon.
– He gathered nine men, four boats and food for ten months and set out from Green River, Wyoming on the 24th of May.
1871-1872 – Powell retraced the route with another expedition, producing photographs, an accurate map, and various papers.
1881 – He became the second director of the US Geological Survey, a post he held until 1894.
1902 – Died on the 23rd of September.