Biography

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Edward Forrest Frank

Hello.  My name is Edward Forrest Frank.  “The Black Guides of Mammoth Cave: A Documentary” was my idea and I am coordinating the research and video production. I invited Phoebe Frear to participate based upon her passion and ability as a filmmaker and I invited Steven Barnes to participate because of his intelligence, thoughtfulness, and personality.  My expertise lies primarily with my experience as a caver, as a karst geologist, and as a cave historian, and only secondarily as a filmmaker.

The details of the documentary project, items of interest, and progress reports are present on the “About” page and the “Blog” page within this website.  The purpose of these individual pages are to introduce ourselves to our audience and to share on a more personal level our backgrounds and expertise.

 

Quick Summary

By training I am a geologist.  I have a Bachelors of Science in Geology from Western Kentucky University (1983), a Master’s Degree from Mississippi State University (1992) and I was PhD candidate in Geology at the University of Minnesota.  I have been a caver and member of the National Speleological Society for over thirty years.  I am an on the Executive Committee of the Native Tree Society.  I have been an avid photographer since high school and have been shooting video since around 1980.  I have authored numerous publications on geology, spelean history, and other subjects.

 

Biography

I grew up in rural western Pennsylvania. (They tell me I was born there, but I really don’t remember.) I was a typical nerdy/outdoors type kid who collected fossils, pressed leaves, and raised caterpillars.

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I was an eagle scout, I went on family vacations, and by the time I was in high school I was heavily involved in photography.

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After high school, I went to University of Pittsburgh for a couple of years studying geology, then found a job as a Physical Science Technician with the US Bureau of Reclamation in Carlsbad, New Mexico. While there I joined the Pecos Valley Grotto of the National Speleological Society and began my life-long passion for exploring caves.  I visited many of the major caves in the Guadalupe Mountains, NM and in the region surrounding Carlsbad.

Frank, E. F., 1980a, Carlsbad Caverns National Park 1930-1980. National Speleological Society, NSS News, Huntsville, Alabama, vol. 38, no. 11, November 1980, p. 295-299.  http://www.karstportal.org/FileStorage/NSS_news/1980-v038-011.pdf

Frank, E. F., 1980b, Preliminary report on Mudgett’s Cave guano mining, Eddy County, New Mexico. Unpublished US Bureau of Land management File Report, Carlsbad, New Mexico, August 15, 1980, 36 p.

Frank, E. F., 1980c, Guano mining in Lechuguilla Cave, Eddy County, New Mexico. Unpublished, US National Park Service File Report, Carlsbad Caverns National Park, New Mexico, August 15, 1980, 22 p.

Frank, E. F., 1988, Cave history: Lechuguila Cave, New Mexico. National Speleological Society, NSS News, Special Issue: The exploration of Lechuguilla Cave, Huntsville, Alabama, vol. 46, no.10, p. 378-379.  http://www.karstportal.org/FileStorage/NSS_news/1988-v046-010.pdf

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Entrance to Hicks Cave, NM

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Me rappelling into Hell Below Cave

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Goliath in Cottonwood Cave, NM

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Cornflakes in Endless Cave, NM

After a couple of years working in New Mexico I went back to school to finish my Bachelors of Science degree in Geology at Western Kentucky University.  While there I joined the Green River Grotto and the Central Kentucky Cave Survey.  I was involved in the mapping efforts at Lost River Cave in Bowling Green, KY and many smaller caves in the region.  While there I participated in survey trips into both Roppel Cave and Mammoth Cave.   I also joined FWS researcher Ed Lisowski in his survey of the status of the blind troglobitic Kentucky Cave Shrimp (Palaemonias ganteri).   I completed my bachelors degree in 1983.

Frank, E. F., 1984a, The origin of cave cones. in Schindel, G., Schindel S., and Tinker, M. ed., Central Kentucky Cave Survey, Bulletin No. 1, Center for Cave and Karst Studies, Department of Geography and Geology, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, Kentucky, p. 118-119.

Frank, E. F., 1984b, Pool surface speleothems. in Schindel, G., Schindel S., and Tinker, M. ed., , Center for Cave and Karst Studies, Department of Geography and Geology, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, Kentucky, p. 115-117.

Frank, E. F., 1984c, Identification of Cave Fish. in Schindel, G., Schindel S., and Tinker, M. ed., Central Kentucky Cave Survey, Bulletin No. 1, Center for Cave and Karst Studies, Department of Geography and Geology, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, Kentucky, p. 81-83.

Frank, E. F., 1984d, Biology of Lost River Cave. in Schindel, G., Schindel S., and Tinker, M. ed., Central Kentucky Cave Survey, Bulletin No. 1, Center for Cave and Karst Studies, Department of Geography and Geology, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, Kentucky, p. 45-57.

Frank, E. F., 1984e, Archaeology at Lost River. in Schindel, G., Schindel S., and Tinker, M. ed., Central Kentucky Cave Survey, Bulletin No. 1, Center for Cave and Karst Studies, Department of Geography and Geology, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, Kentucky, p. 25-26.

Frank, E. F., 1984f, The exploration of Jackson Hole Cave. in Schindel, G., Schindel S., and Tinker, M. ed., Central Kentucky Cave Survey, Bulletin No. 1, Center for Cave and Karst Studies, Department of Geography and Geology, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, Kentucky, p. 22-24.

Frank, E. F., 1984g, History of Lost River Cave. in Schindel, G., Schindel S., and Tinker, M. ed., Central Kentucky Cave Survey, Bulletin No. 1, Center for Cave and Karst Studies, Department of Geography and Geology, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, Kentucky, p. 7-16.

Frank, E. F., 1981, Historic Lost River Cave. National Speleological Society, NSS News, Huntsville, Alabama, vol. 39, no. 7, July 1991, p. 159-161.  http://www.karstportal.org/FileStorage/NSS_news/1981-v039-007.pdf

After receiving my BS in Geology, I returned to Pennsylvania and worked for the Pa DNR Bureau of Mining. I explored and mapped a number of caves in western Pennsylvania, including Sarah Furnace Cave, PA and several caves in West Virginia and Virginia.

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Robert Frank in Sarah Furnace Cave, PA

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Frank, Edward Forrest, 1985,  Iron Ore Mining at Sarah Furnace Cave.   Journal of Spelean History, Vol. 19, No. 1, pp. 11-16.  http://www.caves.org/section/asha/issues/059.pdf

It was during this period I helped organize and participated in the first NSS Expedition to the Dominican Republic in 1986.

Veni, G., Frank, E. F., Wheeland, K. D., 1987, The 1986 expedition to the Dominican Republic. National Speleological Society, NSS News, Huntsville, Alabama, vol. 45, no. 7, p. 256-262.  http://www.karstportal.org/FileStorage/NSS_news/1987-v045-007.pdf

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Petroglyph in a cave in the Dominican Republic

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Ground Sloth skull found inside a cave in the Dominican Republic

I next worked as Research Faculty at the University of Central Florida’s Florida Sinkhole Research Institute in Orlando documenting sinkhole damage to property in Florida.  Funding was cut for the program that same year and I returned to school at Mississippi State University.

Frank, E. F., 1992, Sinkhole development and collateral sediment collapse, Levy County, Florida, in response to a major storm event, March 2-3, 1991 (abs). in Ogden, A. E., ed., Abstracts of the 1992 Friends of Karst, Cookville, TN, p. 15.

Frank, E. F., and Beck, B. F., 1991, An Analysis of the cause of subsidence damage in the Dunedin, Florida area 1990/1991; Florida Sinkhole Research Institute, Report 90-91-2, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL, 65 p.

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House that was eaten by a sinkhole in Florida – view from helicopter

At the Mississippi State University I worked with Dr. John Mylroie primarily investigating  flank margin caves in the Bahamas and on Isla de Mona, Puerto Rico.

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Cave on San Salvadore, The Bahamas

Frank, E. F., Mylroie, J. E., Carew, J. L., Troester, J. W., Taggart, B. E., and Carasquillo, R., 1995, Flank margin cave development, Isla de Mona, Puerto Rico (abs). International Association of Geomorphologists, Southeast Asia Conference, Singapore, June 18-23, 1995, p. 43.

Mylroie, J. E., Carew, J. L., Frank, E. F., Panuska, B. C., Taggart, B. E., Troester, J. W., and Carasquillo, R., 1995, Comparison of flank margin cave development: San Salvador Island, Bahamas and Isla de Mona, Puerto Rico. in Boardman, M. R., ed., Proceedings of the Seventh Symposium on the Geology of the Bahamas and Carbonate Islands, San Salvador Island, Bahamian Field Station, Bahamas, p. 49-81.

Mylroie, J. E., Carew, J. L., Frank, E. F., Panuska, B. C., Taggart, B. E., Troester, J. W., and Carasquillo, R., 1994, Comparison of flank margin cave development: San Salvador Island, Bahamas and Isla de Mona, Puerto Rico. Abstracts and Programs of the Seventh Symposium on the Geology of the Bahamas and Carbonate Islands, San Salvador Island, Bahamian Field Station, Bahamas, p. 16-17.

Frank, E. F., 1993, Aspects of karst development and speleogenesis, Isla de Mona, Puerto Rico: an analogue for Pleistocene speleogenesis in The Bahamas. unpublished, Master of Science Thesis, Department of Geology and Geography, Mississippi State University, 136 p.

Frank, E. F., 1993, Karst Development and Speleogenesis on Isla de Mona–Part I. invited presentation at Friends of Isla de Mona, Geological Society of America Annual Meeting, Boston, Mass. October 24, 1993.

Frank, E. F., Mylroie, J. E., Carasquillo, R., Taggart, B. E., Troester, J. W., and Carew, J. L., 1993, Flank margin cave development, Isla de Mona, Puerto Rico (abs). National Speleological Society annual meeting, Pendelton, Oregon, National Speleological Society Bulletin, vol. 56, no. 2, p.111.

Dumant, K. A., Frank, E. F., Kirkova, J. T., Mylroie, J. E., and Steil, J. R. 1993, Conditions for development and maintenance of a freshwater lens in carbonate islands: Results of laboratory modeling (abs). Program of the National Speleological Society Annual Convention, National Speleological Society, Huntsville, Alabama, p. 37-38.

Mylroie, J. E., Frank, E. F., Carew, J. L., Carasquillo, R., Taggart, B. E., and Troester, J. W., 1992, Caves of Isla de Mona, Puerto Rico (abs). Program of National Speleological Society Annual Meeting, Salem, Indiana, National Speleological Society, Huntsville, Alabama, p. 37.

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Flying to Isla de Mona showing multiple entrances to Cueva del Lirio exposed in the cliff side on the eastern end of the island

After graduating with my MS in Geology in 1992, I went on to the University of Minnesota to continue my research on caves on Isla de Mona, Puerto Rico with Dr. E. Calvin Alexander.

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Frank, E. F. and Benson, R., 1998, Vertebrate Paleontology of Isla de Mona, Puerto Rico. National Speleological Society, Journal of Cave and Karst Studies, 60(2): 103-106.  http://www.caves.org/pub/journal/PDF/V60/V60N2-Frank-Paleontology.htm

Frank, E. F., Wicks, C. M., Mylroie, J. M., Troester, J. W., Alexander Jr., E. C., Carew, J. L., 1998, Geology of Isla de Mona, Puerto Rico. National Speleological Society, Journal of Cave and Karst Studies, 60(2): 69-72.  http://www.caves.org/pub/journal/PDF/V60/V60N2-Frank-Geology.htm

Frank, E. F., 1998, A radiocarbon date of 380 +/- 60 BP for a Taino site, Cueva Negra,Isla de Mona, Puerto Rico. National Speleological Society, Journal of Cave and Karst Studies, 60(2): 101-102.  http://www.caves.org/pub/journal/PDF/V60/V60N2-Frank-Radiocarbon.htm

Frank, E. F., 1998, History of guano mining industry, Isla de Mona, Puerto Rico. National Speleological Society, Journal of Cave and Karst Studies, 60(2): 121-125.  http://www.caves.org/pub/journal/PDF/V60/V60N2-Frank-History.htm

Frank, E. F., Mylroie, J. M., Troester, J. W., Alexander Jr., E. C., Carew, J. L., 1998, Karst development and speleogenesis, Isla de Mona, Puerto Rico. National Speleological Society, Journal of Cave and Karst Studies, 60(2): 73-83.  http://www.caves.org/pub/journal/PDF/V60/V60N2-Frank-Karst.htm

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Kaloch Red Cedar, Olympic National Park, WA

Since the University of Minnesota I have become involved with the Native Tree Society (NTS), a non-profit scientific tree research group.  I serve as the webmaster for the NTS website http://www.nativetreesociety.org/

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The System Administrator for the NTS BBS http://www.ents-bbs.org/

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The moderator for the Native Tree Society’s Facebook Group https://www.facebook.com/groups/538852922838298/

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and Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/NativeTreeSocietyPage.

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I formerly edited the monthly magazine eNTS: The Magazine of the Native Tree Society http://www.nativetreesociety.org/magazine/index_magazine.htm.

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Frank, Edward F., Luthringer, Dale, Harting, Carl, and Kelly, Anthony. 2012,  Trees and Forests of the Allegheny River Island Wilderness and Nearby Islands:  Interim Report through December 2011.  Native Tree Society Special Publication #10.  189 pages.  http://www.nativetreesociety.org/specialreports/ARIW_Report_Dec2011.pdf

Frank, Edward F., 2011, Pockets Full of Forest: Locating, Investigating, and Documenting Remnants of Old-Growth Forests and Pockets of Otherwise Rare or Unusual Forests in Pennsylvania.  Bulletin of the Eastern Native Tree Society, Volume 6, Issue 4, Fall 2011.  14pp.  http://www.nativetreesociety.org/bulletin/b6_4/B_ENTS_v06_04.pdf

Frank, Edward F., 2010, The Really, Really Basics of Laser Rangefinder/Clinometer Tree Height Measurements. Native Tree Society Special Publication #9.  29 pp.  http://www.nativetreesociety.org/measure/really_basic_3a.pdf

As a final note I want to share a short video I made one afternoon this summer for a video contest.  It is not perfect, but cute anyway.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_U4WpY6Q9wM&feature=share

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Edward Forrest Frank on Facebook

4 Responses to Biography

  1. Angel Nieves says:

    Hi Ed, this is Angel from Mona Island… hope you are okay! Please contact me when you can, my email is anievesster@gmail.com. Still got a photo of you and Sue Magdalene in Playa Sardinera…

    Like

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