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Johnston, Henry Halcro

  • VIAF ID: 3662150203820403250003 ( Personal )
  • Persoon
  • 1856-1939

Born Orkney 1856; died Orkney 1939
Educated at Dollar Academy and the Edinburgh Collegiate School, Henry Halcro Johnston took a degree in medicine at Edinburgh University. While at university he played rugby for Scotland, gaining an international cap in 1877. He served in the Army Medical Department in Mauritius, Sudan, The North West Frontier and South Africa from 1881, rising to the rank of Colonel before retiring in 1913. He was re-employed during the First World War, working in hospitals in Gibraltar, Glasgow and York. With a wide range of scientific and botanical interests, he collected herbarium material and seeds throughout his military service around the world. On returning to Orkney in 1919 he was able to concentrate on the botany of the islands, meticulously collecting and documenting his collections, focusing particularly on the microspecies of Taraxacum and Hieracium. Some of his work was published in the Transactions of the Botanical Society of Edinburgh. He was an active member of the Orkney Natural History Society and responsible for organising the herbarium at the Stromness Museum. Most of his botanical collections and notes were bequeathed to the Royal Botanic Garden, Edinburgh.
Sources: R. Desmond ‘Dictionary of British and Irish Botanists and Horticulturalists); obituary folder

Cave, George H.

  • GB/NNAF/P144510
  • Persoon
  • 1872-1965

Born 1872; died 1965. Plant collector
George Cave trained as a Kew gardener, graduating in 1895. In 1896 he became assistant at the Botanic Gardens, Calcutta and in 1900 was appointed Governor of the Cinchona Plantations, Mungpoo (Bengal). In 1904 he became curator of the Lloyd Botanic Garden, Darjeeling. He went on numerous plant collecting tours in Tibet, Nepal and Sikkim and some diaries from these tours are held by the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh.
Sources: Desmond; Rowena Cave, ‘George Cave’s Diary, Sikkim 1906’.

Sutherland, James

  • SUT
  • Persoon
  • 1638/9-1719

Born c 1638/39; died Edinburgh 1719.
Little is known of Sutherland’s early life but by the 1670s he was responsible for maintaining the original Edinburgh botanic gardens at St. Anne’s Yards near Holyroodhouse. In 1676 was appointed ‘intendant’ of the new Edinburgh Physic Garden, leased by the town council at a site near Trinity Hospital (later known as the Botanic Garden) where his responsibilities included teaching botany to medical students. He built an international network of correspondents who sent him seeds and plants and he is credited with the introduction a number of new species including the common larch. By the early 1680s the Trinity Hospital garden contained over 2000 plants, described by Sutherland in his ‘Hortus Medicus Edinburgensis’. The Garden was heavily damaged in 1689 during the siege of Edinburgh Castle when the Nor’ Loch drained into its grounds and Sutherland supervised its repair and successful renovation. In 1695 he was appointed to a new post as professor of botany at Edinburgh University and in the same year he assumed responsibility for planting the Town College Garden (known as the Physick Garden) as well as the running of the private Royal Garden at Holyrood, known as the Kings Garden. In recognition of his contribution he became the King’s Botanist under a royal warrant of William III in 1699. In 1706 he resigned from his professorship and the town and college keeper posts, though in 1710 in a Warrant of Queen Anne he was created the first Regius Professor of Botany for the Royal Garden, a rival to the University. In retirement he continued his botanical work as well as his specialist interest in coins and medals.
Sources: Dictionary of National Biography; HR Fletcher and WH Brown ‘The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh 1670-1970’; Deni Bown, ‘4 Gardens in One’; (R. Desmond ‘Dictionary of British and Irish Botanists and Horticulturalists).

Lonie, Harry

  • LON
  • Persoon
  • ?-1985?

created the rhododendron gates at the RBGE East Gate entrance, Inverleith

Chandler, Bertha

  • Persoon

Bertha Chandler (Mrs. C. Norman Kemp) was the first woman to obtain the degree of D.Sc. of Edinburgh University July 1915.

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