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De Vis, Charles Walter (1829 - 1915)

Archival/Heritage SourcesPublished Sources
Zoologist, Cleric and Ornithologist
Born: 9 May 1829  Birmingham, England.  Died: 30 April 1915  Toowong, Queensland, Australia.
Charles Walter De Vis was Curator of the Queensland Museum 1882-1905 but remained on the staff as consulting scientist until 1912. He gave up the church early in his career to devote himself to science, first in England and later in Australia.

Career Highlights
Born Charles Devis, 9 May, 1829, Birmingham, England, adopting the spelling 'De Vis' about 1882. Died Brisbane, 30 April 1915. Educated University of Cambridge (BA 1851, MA 1884). Rector of Brecon, Somersetshire; Curator of Queen's Park Museum, Manchester. Arrived Australia 1870 and settled in the Rockhampton area where he was School of Arts librarian; contributed articles to the Queenslander 1880-81, using the nom-de-plume 'Thickthorn'; Curator Queensland Museum 1885-1905, consultant 1905-12. Did important early work on fossil birds, working on specimens from the Darling Downs in Queensland and Cooper Creek in South Australia (some of which were collected by J.W. Gregory). Many of the 'new' taxa discovered by de Vis have been synonomised by the later work of Patricia Vickers Rich and Gerard van Tets (qq.v.), but his work, according to Rich, 'painted the first pictures of the fossil birds of Central Australia, most of which were of Quaternary age'. Founding member, Royal Society of Queensland 1884, president 1888-89; Foundation member Australasian Ornithologists' Union 1901 and first Vice-President.

1851Bachelor of Arts (BA) completed at the University of Cambridge, UK
1870Arrived in Australia
c. 1871 - c. School of Arts Librarian in Rockhampton, Queensland
c. 1882Changed name from Devis to De Vis
1884Founding member of the Royal Society of Queensland
1884Master of Arts (MA) completed at the University of Cambridge
1885 - 1905Curator of the Queensland Museum
1888 - 1889President of the Royal Society of Queensland
1901Foundation member Australasian Ornithologists' Union and first Vice-President
1905 - 1912Consultant to the Queensland Museum


Structure based on ISAAR(CPF) - click here for an explanation of the fields.Prepared by: McCarthy, G.J. & Rosanne Walker
Created: 20 October 1993
Modified: 27 July 2006

Published by The University of Melbourne eScholarship Research Centre on ASAPWeb, 1994 - 2007
Originally published 1994-1999 by Australian Science Archives Project, 1999-2006 by the Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre
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Updated: 26 February 2007

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