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TEALL, Sir Jethro Justinian Harris (1849-1924)

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 378 LDGSL/1073
Held at: Geological Society of London
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Full title: TEALL, Sir Jethro Justinian Harris (1849-1924)
Date(s): 1876-1926
Level of description: Series
Extent: 2 volumes
Name of creator(s): Teall | Sir | Jethro Justinian Harris | 1849-1924 | Knight | geologist


Administrative/Biographical history:

Sir Jethro Justinian Harris Teall was born on 5 January 1849, the only child of Jethro Teall, at Northleach, Gloucestershire. He attended Berkeley Villa School followed by St John's College Cambridge, where he turned from mathematics to geology and was taught by Thomas Bonney and Adam Sedgwick. He was the first recipient of the Sedgwick prize for geology in 1874, after which he became a fellow (1875) and taught under the university extension scheme, as well as carrying out petrographic research.

He was particularly interested in metamorphic minerals and the crystallization of magmas, leading him to produce his celebrated work 'British Petrography' (1888), which was partially illustrated by his wife Harriet. In 1888 he joined the Geological Survey of Great Britain, becoming its director from 1901 to 1914, when he retired. During this time he extended the Survey's activities and enhanced its utility and educational value.

Teall was elected Fellow of the Geological Society in 1873, and spent time as secretary (1893-1897) and president (1900-1902). He also received the Bigsby and the Wollaston medals (1889 and 1905). Other recognitions include the presidency of the Geologists' Association (1898-1900), Fellowship of the Royal Society (1890), the Delesse prize from the Académie des Sciences (1907), and honorary doctorates from Oxford, Cambridge, Dublin, and St Andrews, in addition to his knighthood (1916). He died on 2 July 1924.


Scope and content/abstract:

Two scrapbooks of documents, newspaper cuttings and photos collected by Sir Jethro Justinian Harris Teall and his wife Harriet, 1876-1926.

Many items relate to Teall's life, with events including his honorary degrees, lectures he gave, dinners he attended, and invitations to occasions such as the funeral of Edward VII and the coronation of George V. There is also a great deal of material relating to his younger son Frederick Teall, particularly his time in the Cambridge University Athletic Club and his subsequent career in the Egyptian civil service and participation in tennis tournaments in Cairo. There are a few items relating to Teall's wife, Harriet, and his elder son, George Teall, who was in the army.

The first volume mostly dates from Teall's time as director of the Geological Survey, while the second relates to the latter part of Teall's directorship of the Geological Survey and his subsequent retirement activities.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:
Mostly English, with some French and a little Swedish, Arabic and Latin.

System of arrangement:

Conditions governing access:

Access is by appointment only, daily readership fee is applicable unless you are a member of the Society. Please contact the Archivist for further 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:

An online, detailed catalogue will be available shortly.

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Presented by Sir Teall's grandchildren, Mr Jock Teall and Mrs Cynthia Roe, 1994.

Allied Materials

Related material:

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Source: Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Description by Victoria Woodcock.

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:
September 2013

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