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MERRIMAN Collection

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 378 LDGSL/1088
Held at: Geological Society of London
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Full title: MERRIMAN Collection
Date(s): [1870-1930s]
Level of description: Series
Extent: 412 items
Name of creator(s): COOMARASWAMY | Ananda Kentish | 1877-1947 | art historian
WELCH | Robert John Welch | 1859-1936 | natural history photographer
WATTS | William Whitehead | 1860-1947 | geologist and educationist
REID | Arthur Sankey | [c.1858]-1930 | geologist
MAIRET | Ethel Mary | 1872-1952 | née Partridge | hand-weaving revivalist and author x Coomaraswamy
British Science Association | 1831-
xx British Association for the Advancement of Science
W L H Skeen and Co | fl.1860-c.1920 | photographers in Ceylon


Administrative/Biographical history:

The provenance of the slides is unclear, they were found in a damp and dirty 'potting shed' presumably in the late 1990s and subsequently donated to the Society in 2001. At least half of the slides were either taken by Ananda Kentish Coomaraswamy or reflect his interests at the turn of the 19th/20th century and additionally include a number by Ethel Partridge who became his first wife in 1902.


Scope and content/abstract:

Black and white, glass lantern slides by various photographers and geologists mostly of geological subjects but including a small number of ethnographic and botanical images relating to Ceylon [Sri Lanka], [1890-1905]. The majority of the images, c 200, are taken by Ananda Kentish Coomaraswamy but the collection also includes small numbers of slides by others including: Skeen and Co, Ceylon; Arthur Sankey Reid; Geologists' Association; G P Abraham; H A Hinton; John George Goodchild; Newton and Co; Robert John Welch; William Whitehead Watts; Sommer and Son, Naples; and the British Association for the Advancement of Science.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

The collection had no discernible order when it arrived. In order to make it more accessible, it has been arranged generally according to photographer. Around 70 of the slides were either issued by the British Association for the Advancement of Science or are copies of their images. These are indicated in the catalogue record by the official BA slide number.

Conditions governing access:

The condition of many of the slides is currently poor, access to some of the collection is therefore restricted. Please contact the Archivist for information.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copies, subject to copyright and the condition of the original, may be supplied. Requests to publish original material should be submitted to the Archivist.

Finding aids:

Detailed catalogue available online soon.

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Donated by Mrs Mary Merriman, December 2001.

Allied Materials

Related material:

A further collection of lantern slides has been deposited with the Society and is currently undergoing cataloguing under reference LDGSL/1106.

Publication note:

Some of the slides appear in William Whitehead WATTS (ed) 'British Geological Photographs, selected from the British Association collection...', Birmingham: Geological Photographs Committee of the British Association, 1902-1904 (see: LDGSL/933).

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Description by Caroline Lam

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
January 2011; revised after detailed cataloguing February 2013.

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