Important Contributions in Forensic Science

Timeline created by Gingyee
  • 1200

    13th Century China

    13th Century China
    After a man was murdered in a town within China, all knives were collected from the village members. Whichever knife the flies that had gathered around the body landed on, the person who owned it would be found guilty. The man who was convicted later confessed to the crime.
  • Mathieu Orfila

    Mathieu Orfila
    Was considered the "Father of Modern Toxicology" due to him discovering that many tests involved with the poisons used to find murderers guilty or innocent were inaccurate. He spent many months testing the different poisons, and later published a book known as "Treatise of Poisons".
  • William Herschel

    William Herschel
    Used thumbprints on documents to identify workers in India.
  • Alphonse Batillon

    Alphonse Batillon
    “Father of Criminal Identification”. Developed Anthropometry which uses body measurements to distinguish individuals.
  • Henry Faulds

    Henry Faulds
    Uses fingerprints to eliminate an innocent burglary suspect.
  • Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

    Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
    Published his first Sherlock Holmes story; Considered the first “CSI”, featured in four novels and 56 short stories, popularized scientific crime-detection methods.
  • Francis Galton

    Francis Galton
    Published Finger Prints. Conducted the first definitive study of fingerprints and their classification. Gave proof of their uniqueness.
  • Hans Gross

    Hans Gross
    Wrote the first paper describing the application of scientific principles to the field of a criminal investigation. Published Criminal Investigation.
  • Karl Landsteiner

    Karl Landsteiner
    Discovered the ABO blood groups, later received Nobel Prize.
  • Edmond Locard

    Edmond Locard
    Incorporated Gross’ principles within a workable crime lab; became the founder and director of the Institute of Criminalistics at the University of Lyons, France.
  • Albert S. Osborn

    Albert S. Osborn
    Published Questioned Documents. Developed the fundamental principles of document examination.
  • Leone Lattes

    Leone Lattes
    Developed a method for determining blood type from dried blood.
  • August Vollmer

    August Vollmer
    Established the First Crime Lab in the United States, located in Los Angeles.
  • Calvin Goddard

    Calvin Goddard
    Developed a comparison microscope; first used to compare bullets to see if fired from the same weapon.