Biographical dictionary

The Biographical Dictionary of British Coleopterists is compiled and maintained by Michael Darby. The Dictionary can be accessed below, and see also the additional information provide by Michael:

Michael would be pleased to hear from anyone wishing to make corrections or alterations to the Dictionary, which will be fully acknowledged. Email Michael Darby or write to Michael at 33 Bedwin Street, SALISBURY, Wiltshire, SP1 3UT.

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Namesort ascending Dates Biography
WELD-DOWNING, A.K. A Captain in the army who was stationed in India. Arrow (1917) mentions that he ‘collected for me in different parts of India’ and Fowler (1912) that he collected Cicindelidae near Madras. He is also known to have collected in Burma. Weld-Downing gave 502 beetles from India to the NHM in 1923 (1923.324) and Arrow (1917) refers to Rutelinae in Mr Andrewes collection. (MD 12/06)
WEIR, J.W. A Doctor who lived in Glasgow. 13 Coleoptera he collected in the Cape of Good Hope were acquired by Glasgow Museum in 1877 (1877-29). (MD 12/04)
WEILDT, J. A German by birth but included here because he lived in Leicestershire. Lott (2009) p.12 records that his name is given by Frank Bouskell in 1907 as the captor of Aromia moschata ‘in quantities near Loughborough by putting down fresh dough’, and he surmises that this is the ‘man called Wilt, a German, who lived at Loughborough’ who Harry Holyoak wrote of as ‘a first rate entomologist, having very comprehensive collections of both Lepidoptera and Coleoptera. I often to use to visit him and found him a most interesting acquaintance, as he had done a good deal of collecting in various parts of the world, and also found time to take part in the Franco-German war’. (MD 11/09)
WEAVER, R. Many mentions in Stephens (1828) including a reference (p.62) to Dale and Curtis collecting with Weaver in Cumberland. R.Kauffmann mentioned to me that Weaver had written on Lamia but I have not been able to track this down. I presume that it is the same R.Weaver who published on the New Forest Cicada in Mag. Nat. Hist., 5, 1832, pp.668-69. (MD 12/06)
WEALE, J.P.M. Sold insects of all orders from Caffraria to the HDO for £4 in March 1878 (Smith (1986) p.159). (MD 12/04)
WATTS, Walter J. d.1965 Worked at Billingsgate Fish Market and lived at 42 Bramerton Road, Beckenham. Ernest Lewis, who was his friend, tells me that he was a Freeman of the Fishmongers Company and worked at the market from 4am to noon which left him time for beetling in the afternoons. Keith Lewis has told me that his initial interest was Lepidoptera but he became interested in beetles in the late 1920s and that he was very friendly with William Hunt with whom he collected in Devon and Dorset while on holiday. Keith Lewis published a letter from Donisthorpe found in a copy of Fowler that had belonged to Watts in Bull.AES., December 2000. Watts’ collection was sold to Southend Museum for £100 . He had intended to leave it to Ernest Lewis but fell on hard times. Member of the SLENHS from 1928. (MD 12/04)
WATT, James Cromar A collection of Coleoptera made by Watt was acquired by Aberdeen University in 1920-21. It is accompanied by ms notes. (MD 12/04)
WATSON, A.O.C. J.Rennie (1914) mentions that Watson carried out an enquiry into the beetles of the Aberdeen district having begun to arrange the museum collections in Spring 1909 ‘and in a very short time become an ardent collector himself... Up to date 379 species and varieties have been found within the area... 37 are recorded of which only single examples have been found in the district.’ (p.4). (MD 12/04)
WATKINS, Charles James c.1847 – 1907

Published 'Some inmates of a decayed cherry-tree', Ent., 27, 1894, 284-287. Gave a collection of insects including Coleoptera (specially from Gloucester) to Bristol Museum. Atty (1983, iii-iv) records that Watkins was a good hymenopterist and contributor to V.R.Perkins Gloucestershire list of Coleoptera. He also notes that his collection in Bristol Museum is without data. FESL 1900-1907. (MD 12/04, 8/17)

WATERTON, Charles 1782 – 1865 This is the author of Wanderings in South America (1825, and many later editions) and the series of Essays on Natural History (1838-1871). The collections of his now at Wakefield Museum (formerly at Stonyhurst College) include 70 beetles collected by himself. (MD 12/04)