1800-1875


John Dalton

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(September 6, 1788 – July 27, 1844)
England
Dalton was born into a Quaker family. He joined his brother at the age of 15 in running a school. He tried to take up law or medicine but it was not met with enthusiasm from his family. He became a teacher of mathematics and natural philosophy.
He wrote about the absorption of gas by liquids. He wrote about atomic theory and came up with five main points. They were that all elements are made of atoms, all atoms of an element are identical, all atoms of different elements have different atomic weights, different elements can combine to found chemical compounds, and atoms cannot be created or destroyed.


James Clerk Maxwell
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(June 13, 1831 – November 5, 1879)
Scotland
He was born John Clerk and added Maxwell after he received his inheritance. He had two children, one of which died in infancy. He received a good education, attending 4 different colleges.
His major investigation was on the kinetic theory of gases. His theory gives the fraction of gas molecules moved at a given velocity at any temperature. He also mentioned how temperature and heat involve molecular movement.


Alfred Nobel
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(October 21, 1833 – December 10, 1896)
Sweden
When he was 18 he went to the United States to study chemistry and worked for John Ericsson. After he returned to Sweden he devoted himself to the study of explosives. He was the founder of the Nobel Prize, which recognizes outstanding achievements in physics, chemistry, medicine, literature, peace, and economics.
Nobel was able to combine nitroglycerin with more stable substance to make dynamite.