- National Academies (1901)
- American Association for the Advancement of Science
Born February 20, 1874 in North Madison, Ohio, Professor Edgar Roscoe Cumings was the son of Charles Cumings and Rebecca Asbury (Sullivan) Cumings. He taught at a country school for a short time before earning his B.A. 1897 from Union College in New York and his Ph.D. in 1903 from Yale University (where he was a fellow from 1901-1903). He received an Honorary Doctorate of Science from Union College in 1942. He was married to Frances Lois Crowther of Montclair, NJ and they had two children. He served as instructor of paleontology (1898-2903), assistant professor of geology (1903-1906), associate professor of geology (1906-1909), professor of geology (1909-1944), and was head of the Department of Geology for 39 years from 1903-1942. He was acting dean of the IU Graduate School from 1914-1919 and 1923. Cumings was known for his contributions to teaching and administration at Indiana University and also to the research program of the Indiana state geological survey. He and his students studied the paleontology of Indiana and began building the IU Paleontology Collection in earnest. Cumings notably led work on the Cincinnatian (Late Ordovician) of Indiana, the Silurian reefs in the northern part of the state, and on the fauna of the Salem Limestone. He developed the now long-standing relationship between the state geologist and Indiana University. He was a fellow of the Geological Society of America (and its vice president in 1931), fellow of the Paleontological Society (and vice president in 1928 and president in 1931), fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and fellow of the Indiana Academy of Science (and its president in 1925). He was listed in American Men of Science and Indiana Scientists. He was a member of Phi Beta Kappa and Sigma Xi. He authored more than 50 scientific articles and several books including Geology of the Silurian rocks of Northern Indiana (with Shrock, 1928) and Handbook of Indiana Geology (1922).