Abraham Ortelius is the first scientist/mapmaker to propose that the continents once fit together like a jigsaw puzzle. He stateds that the Americas were "torn away from Europe and Africa ... by earthquakes and floods".
Antonio Snider-Pellegrini Publishes "La Création et ses mystères dévoilés"
In 1858, Antonio Snider-Pellegrini publishes "La Création et ses mystères dévoilés". In it, Snider-Pellegrini proposes that all of the continents were once joined together during the Pennsylvanian period.
Alfred Wegener publishes "Die Entstehung der Kontinente und Ozeane"
German meterologist and geophysicist Alfred Wegener proposes in his work "Die Entstehung der Kontinente und Ozeane" (The Origin of Continents and Oceans) that the continents were once joined together in a supercontinent known as "Pangaea". He hypothesizes that sea-floor spreading and Earth's centrifugal force and rotation could be the agents that caused the continents to move apart.
Ott Christoph Hilgenberg publishes "Vom wachsenden Erdball"
Ott Hilgenberg, a German electro-mechanical engineer and geophysicist publishes "Vom wachsenden Erdball" (The Expanding Globe). In it he attempts to substantiate Alfred Wegener's continental drift theory by theorizing that the Earth is growing larger and the continents are moving apart while the planet grows larger.
Samuel Warren Carey proposes Evidence for Therory of Plate Tectonics
Australian geologist Samuel Carey uses paleomagnetism and magnetic feilds in different lithospheric rock. He proved that the continents shifted depending on the position of the north pole.
Harry Hess develops Theory of Sea-floor Spreading
Harry Hess, an American Geologist, becomes one of the leading proponents of sea-floor spreading develops proof for sea-floor spreading during the 1960s. Sea-floor spreading ties directly into continental drift as the peices of lithosphere below the ocean also move the continents when they move. It is some of the greatest proof for continental drift.
Jack Oliver provides Seismic Evidence supporting Plate Tectonics
Jack Oliver, an American scientist at Columbia University, discovered seismic evidence that provided proof for tectonic plate theory. He found that the collision of plates beneath the surface generated seismic waves, of which he recorded.