Russell Ryan

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Russell Ryan
Membership Charter Member

Russell Fossler Ryan (1897-1935) an American geologist and was a founding member of SEG.

Memorial [1]

by Henry C. Cortes

Russell F. Ryan was born February 11, 1897, in Freeport, Illinois, and died in Houston, Texas, on October 8, 1935. His death resulted from an automobile collision near Hampstead, Texas, entirely the fault of the driver of another car. He is survived by his widow, Charlotte Cary Ryan, of Houston, Texas, his parents Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Ryan and one sister, Pearl Ryan, of Freeport, Illinois.

Russell entered the University of Chicago in the fall of 1916, majoring in geology.

Prior to graduation, in September, 1918, he enlisted in the service of his country, being sent overseas in October of that year with the 122nd Engineers. His services terminated with an honorable discharge in August, 1919.

Thereafter Russell engaged in geological work in the Mid-Continent area of the United States and in Cuba. In 1927 he joined the geological organization of the Vacuum Oil Company at Houston, Texas, serving at various times in the capacity of geologist, assistant chief geologist, and acting chief geologist.

On June 15, 1931, Russell married Miss Charlotte Carry Snoddy in Houston, Texas, two home he was a devoted husband.

In 1932 he entered the general consulting practice with headquarters at Houston, continuing with success until his untimely death. Among other interests he was chairman of the Greta (Refugio, County) Operators Association which included a number of major and independent oil companies.

In addition to membership in the American Association of Petroleum Geologists he was an active member of the American Institute of Mining and Metallurgical Engineers, the Society of Petroleum Geophysicists, and the Houston Geological Society.

He was an untiring and intelligent worker and bore a shaer in the responsibility of the discovery of Iowa, Cameron Meadows, Tomball, and other coastal fields of Texas and Lousiana.

Russell was a member of the Methodist church. He was characterized by his devotion to his family and friends, his unstinted generosity, and an outspoken frankness to all.


  1. Cortes, H. C., 1936, Memorial for Russel Fossler Ryan (1897-1935), Bull. Amer. Assoc. Petrol. Geol. vol. 16, No.2, pp.240-241