- WAITE, Edgar Ravenswood (1866-1928)
- scientistwas born at Leeds, England, on 5 May 1866. He received his scientific education at the Victoria university of Manchester, and in 1888 was appointed sub-curator of the Leeds museum. He was soon afterwards made curator, but in 1893 became zoologist at the Australian museum, Sydney. His first interest had been ornithology, but he now extended his studies to other vertebrates, in particular fishes and reptiles. In 1898 he published his Popular Account of Australian Snakes. He was with the trawling expedition conducted by the Thetis and wrote the report on the fishes, and he also reported on the fishes trawled by the Western Australian government. In 1906 he became curator of the Canterbury museum at Christchurch, New Zealand, and did some very valuable work on the fishes of New Zealand. In 1907 he was with the Canterbury Philosophical Institute's expedition to the sub-antarctic islands of New Zealand, and he was zoologist on the Aurora in 1912 during the first sub-antarctic cruise of the Mawson expedition. In March 1914 Waite was appointed director of the South Australian museum at Adelaide. He did some excellent work on the fishes collected by the Mawson expedition, and did not neglect other departments. In 1916 he led an expedition into Central Australia, and he helped to build up an aboriginal collection at his museum which became one of the best in the world. Two years later he went on a collecting expedition to New Guinea, New Britain and New Ireland, and in 1926 spent much time studying European and American museums. While in New York he arranged the Australian section of the museum. He had contracted malaria while in New Guinea and at the beginning of 1928 had a recurrence, which led to his death on 19 January while he was at Hobart attending a meeting of the Australasian Association for the Advancement of Science. He was married and left a widow and a son.Though of a somewhat retiring disposition Waite was a man of great versatility. He was a good linguist and musician, could draw and paint in water-colour, was an expert modeller, had some knowledge of mechanics, and was a capable photographer. Most of these things were useful in his work as curator of a museum, and as such his reputation stood very high. As a scientist his most important work was on the vertebrates. He was fellow of the Linnean Society from an early age, and at the time of his death was a vice-president of the Royal Society of South Australia. He contributed over 200 papers to various scientific publications. His work on The Fishes of South Australia was published in 1923.Transactions and Proceedings Royal Society of South Australia, vol. LII, p. 1; The Register, and The Advertiser, Adelaide, 20 January 1928; The Argus, Melbourne, 20 January 1928.
Dictionary of Australian Biography by PERCIVAL SERLE. Angus and Robertson. 1949.
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Edgar Ravenswood Waite — (5 May 1866 – 19 January 1928) was a famous British/Australian ichthyologist, ornithologist and zoologist.Waite was born in England and received his scientific education at the Victoria University of Manchester. In 1888 ha was appointed sub… … Wikipedia
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