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Biographical entry Williamson, Herbert Bennett (1860 - 1931)

18 June, 1860
Beechworth, Victoria, Australia
30 January 1931
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Botanist and School teacher


Herbert Williamson was a school teacher and head master in a number of Victorian State Schools over a career spanning 49 years. Interested in botany, he planted Acacias, Eucalypts and many other native species of trees and shrubs in the school grounds, and the schools were noted for their beautiful gardens. Herbert Williamson was highly regarded as an amateur botanist. Knowing Frederick von Mueller (qv) helped him to gain an in-depth understanding of botany. Williamson's detailed studies of the Victorian flora were published in several botanical journals and books, and he was a driving force behind the Victorian Field Naturalist's Club's Census of Victorian Plants (1928).


Born Beechworth, Victoria, 18 June 1860. Died Melbourne, 30 January 1931. Educated Chiltern State school. Teacher and later headmaster at a number of Victorian State Schools, ending at Dandenong State School 1922-35.

Honorary keeper, Herbarium, Botany School, University of Melbourne 1929-31. Assistant Secretary and Librarian, Field Naturalists' Club of Victoria 1921-31.

Published a number of botanical papers in the Victorian Naturalist and the Proceedings of the Royal Society of Victoria, including a 9 part work on Victorian ferns in 1926. His very extensive private herbarium was bequeathed to the National Herbarium, Melbourne.


1922 - 1925
Career position - Headmaster at the Dandenong State School
1929 - 1931
Career event - Honorary Keeper of the Herbarium of the Botany School, University of Melbourne
Taxonomy event - Honoured with Eucalyptus maidenii var. x williamsonii Blakely

Related Corporate Bodies

Archival resources

Adolph Basser Library, Australian Academy of Science

  • Australian Botanists - Biographies, MS 064; Adolph Basser Library, Australian Academy of Science. Details

Published resources

Encyclopedia of Australian Science Exhibitions

Online Resources

See also

  • Hall, Norman, Botanists of the Eucalypts: short biographies of people who have named eucalypts, whose names have been given to species or who have collected type material, CSIRO, Melbourne, 1978, 101 pp. Details

Rosanne Walker