Profesor Karl Pearson at desk in Francis Galton Laboratory for National Eugenics

Karl Pearson and Mental Deficiency Act 1913 (UK)

What role did UCL biometrician and eugenicist Karl Pearson have in passage of this Act? Reading Angelique Richardson’s 2014 TLS piece on the Mental Deficiency Act (UK), effective 1914 repealed 1968, sparked me into condensing some research on that Act and possible involvement by Karl Pearson in its development and passage. We know a lot about the Mental Deficiency Act (UK). Wikipedia offers a quick…

Karl Pearson and Francis Galton

Show Me the Eugenics Money, part 1

Francis Galton’s Will left money to University of London “for establishment and endowment of a Professorship” related to eugenics. This blog gives the text of the original donation.

George Gaylord Simpson, 1956 (courtesy American Philosophical Society Library).

George Gaylord Simpson’s “Night Thoughts on Leaving the American Museum,” 1959

George Gaylord Simpson (1902-1984) was a leader in twentieth century vertebrate palaeontology, and he contributed to making the American Museum of Natural History a powerhouse in the field. In 1959, Simpson left his job at the museum in a bitter dispute with its management. Simpson never published a rationale for his resignation, but he secretly wrote one. After his first day unemployed, Simpson penned a…

Euston Road at corner of former Euston Grove, showing bus entrance to Euston Station, 2013.

Euston Grove – History of a London Street NW1

Today, Euston Grove, London NW1 is little more than a roundabout for buses outside Euston Rail Station. Its most noticable feature is Reginald Wynn Owen’s arresting memorial to railway men and women lost in war. One hundred and fifty years ago, Euston Grove was a bustling, fast-growing London street – home to the country’s first metropolitan rail station and home to one of Britain’s most important…

Neo-classical screen at London Terminus at Euston Grove, from Bourne (1839) Drawings of the London and Birmingham Railway (London: Ackermann and Co.).

Bourne’s Drawings of the London and Birmingham Railway (1839)

John Cooke Bourne’s lithograph of Euston Arch and the neo-classical screen in from of the Euston Grove terminus for the railway was published among his Drawings of the London and Birmingham Railway (1839) (British Library collection). This item also was sold as hand-coloured prints and much copied. Euston Arch, Euston Grove and neo-Classical screen

Professor Helen Chatterjee delivering 2015 Robert Grant Memorial Lecture

Robert Grant Memorial Lecture – list of speakers (1997-present)

The annual Robert Grant Memorial Lecture is held in honour of Professor Robert Edmond Grant (born 11 November 1793 in Edinburgh; died 23 August 1874 at home, 2 Euston Grove, more). Grant was a zoologist, an expert on comparative anatomy, an evolutionist, and a political radical. This annual lecture is organised by UCL Grant Museum of Zoology and Comparative Anatomy), with support from several UCL units, including…

Wallis's 1821 Guide for Strangers through London, showing Euston Grove and Euston Square

Maps of Euston Grove through Wallis’s Guide for Strangers through London (1813-1841)

Wallis’s Guide for Strangers through London was an essential tool for visitors to London. Successive editions (1813, 1821, 1826, 1841) allow the historian to trace the growth of many parts of the city, including the area north of the Paddington to Islington Road. The area named “Euston Square” came into being between the 1813 and 1821 editions. The Euston Grove terminus for the London and Birmingham…

Tiger skeleton from No Ordinary Space (History of UCL Grant Museum of Zoology (ISBN 9781906267896) | Professor Joe Cain

No Ordinary Space: UCL Grant Museum (book)

Book on UCL Grant Museum of Zoology UCL’s Grant Museum of Zoology moved to The Thomas Lewis Room in UCL’s Rockefeller Building in 2011. This book answers popular historical questions about the room, the building, and the wider university and medical school environment.  The aim is to investigate basic historical questions visitors have had about the space, some of the architectural details, and the building’s…

Illustration from Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins’ (1854) public lecture on creating Crystal Palace Dinosaurs

Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins: Why I Built the Crystal Palace Dinosaurs

Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins (FGS, FLS) was the sculptor who created the Crystal Palace Dinosaurs. Specifically, he created over thirty statues of prehistoric animals for the Crystal Palace and Park (Sydenham), which opened in June 1854. The statues included dinosaurs (Iguanodon, Megalosaurus, and Hylaeosaurus), Mesozoic marine reptiles (Plesiosaurus, Ichthyosaurus, and Mosasaurus), other extinct reptiles (Dicynodon and Labyrinthdon), and mammals from the Tertiary Period (Anoplotherium and Palaeotherium) and…