Non–Melvill-Tomlin collections

There are many molluscan collections that have been joined with the Melvill-Tomlin collection to make up the scientific holdings of Amgueddfa Cymru – Museum Wales. Here is a guide to a few of them:

Bartlet Span: Of Tenby, Wales. Collection of British marine shells in National Museum of Wales, donated in 1915 (approx. 5,000 specimens).

Cambridge, Phillip G. (1918-1993): Travelled widely during his 33 years in the RAF, to Canada, the USA and Aden. After leaving the RAF was chief technician and research assistant in the School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia, UK. His fossil collection went to the Sedgwick Museum, Cambridge, UK, and his collection of some 6,000 lots of modern molluscs to us. Obituary in Journal of Conchology, 35: 83-84 (with portrait).

Chaster, George William (1863-1910): Amassed a collection of 2,890 lots of north-east Atlantic and Mediterranean marine shells collected mostly by himself. Obituary in Journal of Conchology, 13: 72-74.

Dance, S. Peter: A former member of staff of the National Museum of Wales and his collections include shells from Britain, Florida, Borneo and material from the Arabian Sea/Gulf of Oman used for the book Seashells of Eastern Arabia.

Dean, J. Davy (1876-1937): A curator who worked in the National Museum of Wales from 1915 to 1937. His collection, which he left to the Museum, numbers some 2,000 lots of non-marine mollusca mainly from Europe and Jamaica and is especially rich in the Clausilidae. Obituary in Nautilus, 15: 48.

Dillwyn, Lewis Weston (1778-1855): Click here for more information.

Evans, John G. (1941-2005): Collections of molluscan material from various archaeological sites which are kept separately from the main systematic sequences as they are stored stratographically. Obituary in Journal of Conchology, 39 (1): 111-117.

Fedden, Francis: While engaged on geological work in India during the 1860's he made a collection of some 300 shells from the Shan States in Burma which was presented to what is now the National Museum of Wales by his widow in 1894.

Gwatkin, Henry Melvill (1844-1916): Malacologist especially interested in radulae. His collection is now mainly in the Natural History Museum, London, with some 1723 slide preparations in the National Museum of Wales. They are listed in part 64 of the Handlists of the Molluscan Collections in the National Museum of Wales: Series 1. Radula Slides of H. M. Gwatkin and J. R. le B. Tomlin. Compiled by Alison Trew. February 1996. 124 pages.

Holyoak-Seddon: The non-marine collections of D. T. Holyoak and M. B. Seddon from north Africa, Madeira and Europe numbering approximately 25,000 lots, made from the late 1970s to early 1990s and including much alcohol-preserved material.

Hoyle, William Evans (1855-1926): Click here for more information.

Marshall, James Thomas (1842-1922): Collector and conchologist. His non-marine shells are in Nottingham Museum, UK, and his British marine shells are in the National Museum of Wales. The collection contains much material from the Porcupine Expedition and his specimens cited a series of papers he wrote on Additions to the British List. There is also material in the Melvill-Tomlin collection. Obituary in Journal of Conchology, 17: 99-103.

Mills, Y. H.: Had in his possession for some years the British collection of C. M. Phelps which was then presented to the National Museum of Wales in 1916.

Oldham, Charles (1868-1942): A series of 407 British non-marine shells was donated to the National Museum of Wales between 1922 and 1937. Obituary in Journal of Conchology, 22: 1-2.

Pain, Tom (1915-2003): In 1981 ca. 2,000 lots of the Pain collection were acquired by the National Museum of Wales. After his death in 2003 the remainder of his collection, containing ca. 4500 lots, was bequeathed to us. The collection is from worldwide localities and includes the Pilidae of G. B. Sowerby 3rd and the figured specimens from Alderson’s book Studies in Ampullaria. Obituary in Journal of Conchology, 38 (2): 179-191.

Rippon, Robert Henry Fernando (1816-1917): This collection was acquired by the National Museum of Wales in 1918 presented by Lord Rhondda. It consists of ca. 25,000 shells from all over the world.

Saul, Mary: A collection of ca. 600 lots of marine shells collected in Sabah by Mary herself.

Wotton, F. W. (1847-1899): Was an amateur naturalist who became natural history tutor to the children of the Marquis of Bute in Cardiff. His collection of 3,300 lots was presented to the old Cardiff Museum in 1898 and later formed the basis of the collections of the National Museum of Wales.

The collections also hold the results of field work by present and past members of staff. Marine and non-marine molluscs have been collected from not only Britain and adjacent European shores but also the Mediterranean, Hong Kong, Australia, the Red Sea, Arabian Gulf, Gulf of Oman, East Africa, West Africa, Madeira, Vancouver and the Irish Sea.