Thursday, 15 September 2011

Two conferences on natural history

Botanic gardens, science, explortation and empire... This history of plant collectors and their relationships with Empire is a fascinating one. Two conferences coming up explore this theme:

“Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker- Botanist-Explorer-Champion of Darwin- A centenary celebration”

Conference at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, 9 December 2011

In an age of great naturalists, Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker (1817-1911) was perhaps the greatest Victorian botanist. His reputation is based on his early travels in the South Pacific Ocean and India, his lifetime’s work on the world’s flora and biogeography, and twenty commanding years as Director of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Sir Joseph’s fame has continued to grow through his friendship with and staunch support for Charles Darwin.

A day of talks by leading experts, behind-the-scenes tours, and a reception with private view of the centenary exhibition on Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker’s life and work (1817-1911). The conference fee is £35 (£15 for students) and includes attendance at the meeting, refreshments, lunch, and evening reception. Places are limited and filling up quickly!

Further details and booking information can be found at:

Wallich and Indian natural history: Collection dispersal and the cultivation of knowledge

A two-day interdisciplinary conference to celebrate the collections of the Danish botanist Nathaniel Wallich (1786-1854) and Indian natural history.

6 - 7th December 2011, at the Natural History Museum and Kew Gardens, London.

The Natural History Museum project is working to reunite historically and scientifically significant plant specimens at the Museum with the correspondence and illustrations of Nathaniel Wallich, the superintendent of the Calcutta Botanical Gardens for the East India Company from 1817 to 1846.

The project includes: a website; collaboration with the Calcutta Botanic Gardens and the National Archives of India; a survey of collateral natural history drawing collections; hosting of humanities researchers from India; and a two-day interdisciplinary conference

More information available at:


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