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Biographical entry Beckler, Hermann (1828 - 1914)

Dr (MD)

28 September 1828
Höchstädt an der Donau, Bavaria, Germany
10 December 1914
Fischen im Allgäu, Bavaria, Germany
Botanical collector and Medical practitioner


Hermann Beckler was a German medical practitioner who also collected a large number of botanical specimens, when he lived in Australia in the second half of the 19th century. He was also employed by Ferdinand Mueller at Royal Botanical Gardens Melbourne from 1859 to 1860, collecting around the Hastings, Macleay, Richmond and Clarence Rivers in New South Wales, and Moreton Bay, Queensland


Herrmann Beckler accompanied the Burke and Wills Victoria Exploring Expedition ( 1860-1861) as medical officer and botanist. He returned to Germany in 1862. He was known for the high standard of his collections, and approximately 16 species were named in honour of his contributions, including species of the genera Cleisostoma, Dendrobium, Ficus, Helichrysum, Hibiscus, Ixora and Myrtus.


1856 - 1862
Career position - Medical practitioner in Australia
1859 - 1860
Career position - Employed by F. Mueller at Melbourne Botanic Gardens
1859 - 1860
Career event - Collected botanical specimens in Moreton Bay, Queensland and New South Wales rivers
Taxonomy event - Eucalyptus microcorys F.Muell. Beckler collected a syntype.
1860 - 1861
Career event - Botanist and medical officer on the Burke and Wills Expedition.

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Published resources

Encyclopedia of Australian Science Exhibitions


  • Beckler, Hermann, A Journey to Cooper's Creek. (Melbourne: Melbourne University Press at Miegunyah Press with State Library of Victoria, 1993), 219 pp. Details
  • Beckler, Hermann, Entdeckungen in Australien: Briefe und Aufzeichnungen eines Deutschen 1855-1862 (Discoveries in Australia: a German's Letters and Papers 1855-1862). (Stuttgart: Jan Thorbecke Verlag, 2000), 403 pp. Details

Book Sections

  • Gillbank, Linden, 'The Botanical Legacy of Ferdinand Mueller and Hermann Beckler' in Burke and Wills: the Scientific Legacy of the Victorian Exploring Expedition, Joyce, E. Bernie and McCann, Douglas A., eds (Collingwood: CSIRO Publishing, 2011), pp. 97-129. Details
  • Voigt, J., 'The Australian experience of a German doctor: Hermann Beckler's letters and writings on the fifth continent' in Stories of Australian migration, Hardy, J., ed. (Sydney: New South Wales University Press, 1993), pp. 67-82. Details

Journal Articles

  • Darragh, Thomas A., 'Hermann Beckler: contributions on Australia made in Germany', Historical Records of Australian Science, 28 (2) (2017), 140-5, Details
  • Willis, J. H., 'The Botany of the Victoria Exploring Expedition (September 1860-June 1861) and of Relief Contingents from Victoria (July 1861-Noveber 1862)', Proceedings of the Royal Society of Victoria, 75 (1962), 247-268. Details
  • Wood, Beverley and Darragh, Thomas A., 'In his own words: Dr Hermann Beckler's writings about his journeys between the Darling River and Bulloo, 1860-1', Historical Records of Australian Science, 27 (1) (2016), 28-40, Details


Resource Sections


  • Beckler, Hermann, Entdeckungen in Australien: Briefe und Aufzeichnungen eines Deutschen 1855-1862 (Discoveries in Australia: a German's Letters and Papers 1855-1862). (2000)
    McMullen, Gabrielle L., Historical Records of Australian Science, 13 (3), (2001), 362-363. Details

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 (Melbourne: CSIRO, 1978), 101 pp. Details
  • Keogh, Luke, 'Duboisia pituri: a Natural History', Historical Records of Australian Science, 22 (2011), 199-214. Details
  • Wales, Murdoch and Pearn, John, 'Pioneer medical practitioners on the Darling Downs', Journal of the Royal Historical Society of Queensland, 16 (2) (1996), 79-92. Details

Christine Moje and Neville Walsh