News

Thursday • July 20, 2017  |  1:00 pm  |  Gibbes Museum

 

PLEASE JOIN US  at the GIBBES

  • Special screening of the videoThe Curious Mister Catesby.
  • Signing of the book, The Curious Mister Catesby, by David J. Elliott, Executive Director of the Trust (learn more here).
  • Tour of the exhibit, “Artist, Scientist, Explorer: Mark Catesby in the Carolinas,” led by Pam Wall, Curator of Exhibitions.

$15 museum entry •  Members free

April 27, 2017

 

CATESBY AT THE GIBBES – Don’t Miss These Special Events

As you know, the Gibbes Museum in Charleston has a notable exhibition coming this May 12, namely forty-four original Catesby watercolors from the Royal Library at Windsor Castle.  It will run through September 24.  Eighty percent of the Catesby watercolors in this exhibition have never been seen in the US before.

On Saturday, May 13 there will be a symposium on "The World of Mark Catesby" which is open to the public.  Starting at 9 am, Henrietta McBurney, Curator of Collections, Newnham College, Cambridge and formerly Deputy Keeper of Prints & Drawings at the Royal Library at Windsor Castle and the leading authority on the watercolors, will talk about them.  She will be followed by Leslie Overstreet, Curator of Natural History-Rare Books at the Smithsonian Libraries and the leading authority on Catesby's masterwork The Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands.  Leslie will discuss how the watercolors became etchings in The Natural History.  Henrietta and Leslie are not only the authors of relevant chapters in The Curious Mister Catesby: a "truly ingenious" naturalist explores new worlds, but were also advisors in the production of the PBS documentary The Curious Mister Catesby.

Then, there will be a panel discussion about both the Catesby watercolors as well as some original George Edwards watercolors that will also be exhibited. These watercolors, which have been in Charleston's Drayton family for almost three centuries, are now housed at Charleston's historic Drayton Hall Plantation.  The panel will be introduced by Professor Richard Porcher, who is a leading authority on the botany and agriculture of colonial South Carolina, and will be moderated by Professor Patrick McMillan, whose research has shown that Catesby's explorations reached at least as far as Clemson, SC.  Panelists will be Carter Hudgins, President of the Drayton Hall Preservation Trust and David Elliott, Executive Director of the Catesby Commemorative Trust.

Following a box lunch, Henrietta will lead a tour of the exhibition. The cost is $40 for members and $65 for non-members.  Reservations may be made by visiting http://bit.ly/GibbesCatesby.

The Gibbes will be holding other events during the course of the summer, including two screenings of The Curious Mister Catesby on May 30 and July 20.  The May 30 event will also include a book signing by Sylvia Bacon, principal author of a new picture book Mark Catesby's Natural History: An Introduction.   (To see a sample of this book visit https://online.flippingbook.com/view/164766/ ).

April 14, 2017

IT’S A SMALL WORLD…

A few weeks ago, we were fascinated to encounter a Catesby-related website involving the Delphi Club on Abaco in the Bahamas (see https://rollingharbour.com/2015/07/13/mark-catesby-pioneering-naturalist-of-early-c18/)  Not only does the site include material from our own site, including three of our videos (thank you for passing them  along), but also mentions that the Delphi Club has three geographically appropriate Catesby etchings in one of its rooms.

This site also includes a pertinent quotation from Catesby’s Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands -- “Illuminating natural history is so particularly essential to the perfect understanding of it.”  He was one of the first to really adopt this principal, which is one of the things that make his book such a landmark.

A little sleuthing led us to the blogmaster, Keith Salvesen, who we found actually lives in London even though he is a member of the Delphi Club.  And at the time we contacted him, his wife was just back from New Haven having visited our old friend and Catesby authority Amy Myers, Director of the Yale Center for British Art.  The reason for her visit was an exhibition for which she had published a companion book Enlightened Princesses.  The Curious Mister Catesby author Mark Laird was a contributor.  Catesby had dedicated his Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands to two of three of these princesses.

Previously she had published Mrs. Delaney and Her Circle. Mark Laird was the principal author and Charles Nelson, CCT’s Senior Research Director, was a contributor.

March 16, 2017

 

Upcoming Merian Conference

 

We're delighted to let you know that TCMC authors Kay Etheridge and Florence Pieters have organized a conference on Maria Sibylla Merian next June 7-9, in the Netherlands.  In addition to organizing the event, they will speak on "A biologist to the bone" and "Maria Sibylla Merian’s additions to alba amicorum," respectively.

 

Also included in a truly comprehensive group of speakers are TCMC authors Henrietta McBurney Ryan and Leslie Overstreet.  Henrietta will speak on "The Influence of Maria Sibylla Merian on the Art and Science of Mark Catesby" and Leslie on "The Editions of Merian's Metamorphosis Insectorum Surinamensium."

 

Registration for the conference is now open at https://www.aanmeldernl/merianconference.  The link also provides detailed information about what appears to be a really exciting event.  We understand that the inspiration for this event came from CCT's 2012 Catesby Tercentennial Symposium.

 

 

 

 

 

March 9, 2017

 

EXHIBITION OF ORIGINAL CATESBY WATERCOLORS COMES TO CHARLESTON FROM THE ROYAL COLLECTION

 

 

Today, Charleston's Gibbes Museum of Art announces a new special exhibition opening at the Gibbes this spring with works by Mark Catesby titled Artist, Scientist, Explorer: Mark Catesby in the Carolinas. The show, which runs from May 12 – September 24, 2017, features 44 watercolor paintings by English artist, scientist and explorer Mark Catesby, generously lent by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II from the British Royal Collection.

 

“The Carolinas, and particularly the city of Charleston, is a significant location in the fascinating story of Catesby’s life and work,” said Angela Mack, Executive Director of the Gibbes. “We are honored to host this special exhibition and provide a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to bring Catesby’s original watercolor paintings to the very location that inspired their creation.”

 

Catesby arrived in Charleston in 1722, and for four years traveled throughout South Carolina and beyond documenting birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, insects and mammals indigenous to the American colonies. Catesby’s journey resulted in a series of beautiful watercolors that reflect the natural habitats of the Carolinas, Florida and the Bahamas, which ultimately brought to life the first major illustrated work on the botanical and animal life of North America The Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands. Catesby's original watercolors were bought by King George III in 1768.

 

“These watercolors are usually housed in the climate controlled conditions of the Print Room at Windsor Castle, and so this exhibition provides a wonderful opportunity to see them in a new context,” said David Elliott, Executive Director of the Catesby Commemorative Trust. “These vivid images represent not just the fruition of Catesby’s work in North America, but also the foundation of The Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands, described by a knowledgeable contemporary as ‘the most magnificent work I know of, since the Art of Printing has been discover’d.’”

 

“Mark Catesby set the stage for three centuries of natural history exploration and, subsequently, for conservation, with his grand opus The Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands,” said Gilbert Butler of the Gilbert & Ildiko Butler Family Foundation. “His beautiful renderings exposed European and American audiences to a new and exotic biota in the southeastern United States. We are pleased to be able to support this exhibition of Catesby’s original watercolors at the Gibbes, where 35 of the watercolors are being exhibited for the first time in the United States.”

 

 

Artist, Scientist, Explorer: Mark Catesby in the Carolinas will also include watercolors created circa 1733 by Catesby’s friend George Edwards, a fellow artist who created precise renderings of birds. In many cases, the two artists painted the same subject, including the now extinct Carolina Parakeet. Collected by John Drayton in 1733, rediscovered in 1969, and recently conserved, the Edwards paintings will be on loan from The Lenhardt Collection of George Edwards Watercolors at Drayton Hall, an historic site of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

 

“This exhibition marks the first showing of Catesby’s original watercolors in Charleston, and only the second exhibition of his watercolors in the United States,” said Jonathan Marsden, Director, Royal Collection Trust. “On behalf of Her Majesty The Queen, we are delighted to share this selection of Catesby’s most treasured watercolors with the Charleston community.”

 

Artist, Scientist, Explorer: Mark Catesby in the Carolinas is made possible through the vision and financial support of the Gilbert & Ildiko Butler Family Foundation.

 

For images of the exhibit, visit http://bit.ly/2n7mujm.

 

To learn more about these exhibitions or to purchase tickets, visit www.gibbesmuseum.org.

 

About the Gibbes Museum of Art

Home to the Carolina Art Association, established in 1858, the Gibbes Museum of Art is recognized among the oldest arts organizations in the United States. Housing one of the foremost collections of American Art from the 18th century to the present, the museum’s mission is to enhance lives through art by engaging people of every background and experience with art and artists of enduring quality and by providing opportunities to learn, to discover, to enjoy, and to be inspired by the creative process. For more information, visit www.gibbesmuseum.org.

 

Royal Collection Trust

Royal Collection Trust, a department of the Royal Household, is responsible for the care of the Royal Collection and manages the public opening of the official residences of The Queen.  Income generated from admissions and from associated commercial activities contributes directly to The Royal Collection Trust, a registered charity. The aims of The Trust are the care and conservation of the Royal Collection, and the promotion of access and enjoyment through exhibitions, publications, loans and educational programmes. Royal Collection Trust’s work is undertaken without public funding of any kind.  www.royalcollection.org.uk

 

The Royal Collection

The Royal Collection is among the largest and most important art collections in the world, and one of the last great European royal collections to remain intact.  It comprises almost all aspects of the fine and decorative arts, and is spread among some 13 royal residences and former residences across the UK, most of which are regularly open to the public.  The Royal Collection is held in trust by the Sovereign for her successors and the nation, and is not owned by The Queen as a private individual.

 

At The Queen’s Galleries in London and Edinburgh and in the Drawings Gallery at Windsor Castle, aspects of the Collection are displayed in a programme of temporary exhibitions.  Many works from the Collection are on long-term loan to institutions throughout the UK, and short-term loans are frequently made to exhibitions around the world as part of a commitment to public access and to show the Collection in new contexts. 

February 23, 2017

Dr. Charles Nelson

We're delighted to advise you that Dr. Charles Nelson has been awarded the gold Medal of Honour of the Royal Horticultural Society of Ireland.  This medal, which is awarded infrequently, recognizes Charles as a "World renowned botanist and dedicated academic research scientist.”  The Trust certainly agrees with this assessment.  This is the third major award that Charles has received in the past three years.

Concurrently the Trust is delighted to announce that Charles has been appointed our Senior Research Director and Trustee Emeritus.

Discussion of Creating a Better Way to Learn

SC Educational Television has been generous enough to provide a direct link, complete with Catesby's image of the mocking bird, to the podcast of Dr. Walter Edgar's interview of Dr. Frances Welch, Dean Byrd and David Elliott on the Creating a Better Way to Learn collaboration between the College of Charleston's School of Education, SCETV and the Trust.  This program, with its potential for national impact, is the Trust's most important initiative so far.   The link is http://scpublicradio.org/post/creating-better-way-learn.

Feb. 15, 2017

A fascinating new book authored by our friend and associate, Henrietta McBurney Ryan, has been published by Brepols & Harvey Miller of Belgium.  The volume is being launched in the Cassiano dal Pozzo, Natural History Series in collaboration with The Royal Collection.

Henrietta’s new work is focused on natural history drawings of birds and other animals from 17th century collections of Cassiano dal Pozzo who had a particular interest in ornithology. Birds are thus the best-represented members of the animal kingdom in this group, with more than 200 drawings of both native and exotic species.  

We extend our congratulations to Henrietta and look forward to having a copy of her new work in our libraries.

 

January 20, 2017
 
Blog posted by Smithsonian about Creating a Better Way to Learn program –
 
Catesby in the Classroom: Students Explore the Intersection of Art and Science

In the early eighteenth century, Mark Catesby set foot in a New World. Arriving from his native England, Catesby would spend the better part of ten years, spread across two separate trips, exploring, documenting, and collecting North America's rich biodiversity.

Catesby, Mark. The Natural History of Carolina, Florida, and the Bahama Islands. v. 1, ed. 1. pl. 19. Digitized by Smithsonian Libraries. http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org/page/40753174

In order to capture a visual record of the wildlife he encountered, Catesby produced a wealth of sketches and watercolors, placing great emphasis on portraying each species in as life-like a manner as possible. To achieve this, Catesby made field drawings while traveling, allowing him to work from live animals or fresh specimens. These drawings were later worked up into watercolors.

Upon returning to England in 1726, Catesby began work on a large, grand folio publication about his research and time in North America. The first part of the work was issued in 1729, with the final part being issued eighteen years later, in 1747. This masterpiece, entitled The Natural History of Carolina, Florida, and the Bahama Islands, contains 220 plates based mostly upon Catesby's own watercolors. It is the first fully illustrated book on the flora and fauna of North America.

The success of Catesby's work was based largely on his emphasis on personal observation and use of art to convey a visual record of his research.

Over 250 years later, students in South Carolina are following Catesby's example.

As part of a collaboration with the Catesby Commemorative Trust, Dr. Tracey Hunter-Doniger used illustrations from The Natural History of Carolina, Florida, and the Bahama Islands as the foundation for lesson plans designed to help students learn more about the importance of observation and the relationship between art and science.

"Before photography, scientists used drawings to record what they saw. Scientists also had to be artists. These lessons are an opportunity for students to see how art and science are connected while also understanding the importance of Catesby's work and his role in natural history," emphasizes Tracey.


Dr. Tracey Hunter-Doniger. Image Credit: College of Charleston website http://teachered.cofc.edu/faculty-staff-listing/hunter-doniger-tracey.php

A fifteen year K-8 visual art education veteran, Tracey has spent the last five years at the College of Charleston as an Assistant Professor of Creativity and Creative Arts in Education. In the fall of 2016, Tracey teamed up with her friend Erin Russell, the art teacher at Memminger Elementary School in Charleston, SC, to implement a trial run of her lesson plans in the 1st, 3rd, and 5th grade art classes at Memminger.

All three classes were challenged to use their powers of observation to record what they saw, just as Catesby had done centuries before. Students were given copies of Catesby's illustrations, which Tracey downloaded and printed from the Biodiversity Heritage Library.

"Having access to this resource through BHL is a treasure," praises Tracey. "Being able to show the students the prints of the original artworks and use them to explain that these represent what Catesby saw and what he wanted to convey speaks volumes to the students."

The first grade students were instructed to use the illustrations as a reference to draw their own copy of the specimens. The third and fifth graders were asked to flex their observational skills even further by not only copying the illustration as they saw it, but also homing in on a specific section of the image and creating a more detailed depiction of that area, as though they were looking at it through the lens of a microscope.


Example of the 3rd and 5th grade Catesby lesson, whereby students "zoom" in on details in the specimen being observed. Example by Dr. Tracey Hunter-Doniger.

While the trial runs of each class were limited to one, 45-minute session, Tracey believes that the lessons helped the students understand how art can be a scientific tool. For future iterations, she hopes to run the classes as three-week lessons where students start by observing and copying Catesby's art in the classroom and then extend their learning to the outdoors by taking nature walks and drawing in the field, as Catesby did. She would also love the students to have the opportunity to explore Catesby's publication in full through the BHL website.

"Access is key," stresses Tracey. "In an ideal scenario, we would go into the website, we would do research, and then we would practice the skills we learn by going into the field. We would 'do' as Catesby did. We would 'be' Catesby in the field."

The lessons that Tracey created are just two of several that are being developed as part of a collaboration with the Catesby Commemorative Trust and the College of Charleston. For example, a science lesson, written by William Veal, Cyndi Hall, and Rodney Moore, uses Catesby's art to help students assess how adaptations contribute to a species' ability to survive in a given environment. Lesson activities include drawing a bird inspired by a Catesby illustration, noting characteristics (such as beak shape), and performing experiments to see how various adaptations might help that species survive.

The lessons plans are being made available to teachers in South Carolina through the LearningWhy site created by South Carolina ETV. Eventually, the plans will also be made available to teachers across the country through PBS LearningMedia.


Catesby, Mark. The Natural History of Carolina, Florida, and the Bahama Islands. v. 2, ed. 1, pl. 17. Digitized by Smithsonian Libraries. http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org/page/40680449

From Tracey's perspective, the use of Catesby's material in these lesson plans is a powerful way to integrate primary source material that is not only historically significant but also highly relevant to the area where she and her students live.

"Living in an area that's so rich in history, it's very impactful to be able to show the students how Catesby's story fits into that history," says Tracey. "The art is the visual side of that narrative. It helps explain who Catesby was, what he did, and why he was important. If you're telling the Catesby story, the art is a critical part of that story."

Thanks to the Biodiversity Heritage Library, students in South Carolina and others around the world can freely and easily access Catesby's work and countless other natural history treasures, no matter where their classroom journeys take them

 

 

 

January 17, 2017

We are growing more and more excited about the educational collaboration among the Catesby Commemorative Trust, the College of Charleston’s School of Education, and South Carolina Educational Television.  The Creating a Better Way to Learn program is based on Mark Catesby’s work as an artist and scientist, as expressed in his etchings.  To learn more about the program, you can listen to a comprehensive interview recently recorded by Dr. Walter Edgar, Professor of History at USC for his SCETV radio program “Dr. Walter Edgar’s Journal.”  Joining Dr. Edgar for the interview are Catesby Commemorative Trust Executive Director David Elliott, Dr. Frances Welch, Dean of the College of Charleston’s School of Education, and Director of Education for SCETV Dean Byrd.

The program will be broadcast on SCETV radio at noon on Friday, January 27th. If you do not receive ETV radio, we encourage you to join the podcast beginning on Monday, January 23rd at

http://www.npr.org/podcasts/381444475/walter-edgar-s-journal.

 

 

Another rave review!

What a pleasant surprise to receive yet another quite positive review of The Curious Mister Catesby since its publication in March of 2015!  Vaughn Scribner, of the University of Central Arkansas, has written in the August 2016 Journal of Southern History a comprehensive and thoughtful opinion. His comments begin, “Twenty-five contributors (including historians, film makers, botanists, and anthropologists) take a multifaceted approach to a complex man.  What emerges is a sweeping picture of Mark Catesby, his life’s work and the world that he lived in.  Ultimately, the volume manages to bridge the ever-elusive gap between popular and scholarly history.” Copies of The Curious Mister Catesby continue to be offered on our website www.catesbytrust.org and on Amazon.  Great for Christmas giving this year and beyond.

 

Heather Society Recognizes Dr. Charles Nelson

Congratulations to Dr. Charles Nelson FLS VMM, Trustee of the Catesby Trust and co-editor of The Curious Mister Catesby. In September, Charles was recognized by Britain’s Heather Society with their rare Award of Honour.   Only the third such award ever granted by the Society, it was presented on the occasion of Charles’ retirement from his positions as Yearbook Editor, Administrator and Registrar over the course of 35 years of horticultural distinction. 

We are proud to share news from Smithsonian Libraries.  This announcement comes from Grace Costantino of the SIL’s Biodiversity Heritage Library.  The BHL is a consortium of major natural history, botanical, and research libraries that cooperate to digitize and make accessible the literature of biodiversity held in their collections as part of a global "biodiversity commons."

Ms Costantino writes, “Sept. 1, we will publish a blog post about Catesby's Natural History of Carolina, Florida, and the Bahama Islands. The post extensively cites the wonderful The Curious Mister Catesby for information about Catesby, the publication and its impact on science, particularly Linnaeus, and highlights SIL's magnificent copy. Another focus of the post is the three editions of the work, which have all been completely taxon tagged in the BHL Flickr. Thanks to this tagging, we can compare illustrations across editions, which is another thing the post highlights.”

The Trust is pleased to learn of this blog post and encourages readers to visit http://blog.biodiversitylibrary.org/2016/09/catesbys-magnificent-natural-history-in.html

The beautifully presented material is based largely on our book, The Curious Mister Catesby.  Within the blog post are found links and instructions for using the app designed to cross reference Catesby’s illustrations. The quick reference tool will be welcomed by Catesby scholars and researchers as well as the increasing numbers of Catesby students and collectors.

As we hoped when the Catesby Trust was formed, more people from all walks are seeking to learn about this curious man and his life’s works. 

Our friend and valued supporter, Pamela Cohen, whose professional wildlife photography hangs in many of our homes, has advanced to the semi-finals in an exciting TV show competition to become “America’s Top Photographer.”  The program is in development under the direction of Nigel Barker who also developed the hit series “America’s Top Model.” Pamela generously contributed several pieces of her work to the pages of The Curious Mister Catesby.  We wish her greatest good luck as she moves forward in the competition and hope to see her great photos and smiling face as a TV star in the near future.

 

We are delighted to pass along to you an appeal from Leslie Overstreet of Smithsonian Libraries. As many of you know, Leslie has been instrumental in Catesby projects from the earliest stages and provides continued support, important research findings, and surprises all along the way.  Following is Leslie’s request, reprinted here from the Society for the History of Natural History newsletter section Notes & Queries:

“For my census of surviving copies of Mark Catesby’s Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands , (London, 1731-1743, i.e. [1729-1747]), I would be grateful to hear from libraries, museums, country estates, and private owners whose copy I have not yet examined.  If your copy is listed in OCLC or COPAC I know about you; the hard part is finding others that are not so listed and accessible.  I intend to publish the census when it is as complete as possible, but confidentiality regarding ownership or location will be assured, if desired.  Information about the 2nd (1754) and 3rd (1771) editions is also appreciated for a separate study.  Many thanks.”  Leslie K. Overstreet, Email:  overstreetL@si.edu

 

 

 

 

The Catesby Commemorative Trust Executive Director David Elliott has announced the addition of two new Trustees to the Board.  We are proud and excited to welcome Sarah Carey and Kevin Cox to our expanded Board of Trustees.  We invite you to read their impressive biographies.

Sarah Carey was National Chair of the Garden Club of America Scholarship Committee and was the Garden Club of America Liaison to the Royal Horticultural Society (2007-2014).  She conceived and coordinated the award-winning GCA Centennial Exhibit, A Lasting Legacy, at the 2013 RHS Chelsea Flower Show.   In February 2016 she was awarded the Royal Horticultural Society Vietch Memorial Medal for her outstanding contribution to the advancement of the science and practice of horticulture.

She served on the boards of the UNC-Chapel Hill Women’s Leadership Council and their Faculty Mentoring Awards Committee; the Kansas Cosmosphere Foundation Board; the Hospital for the Women of Maryland, the Greater Baltimore Medical Center; and was Chairman of the Board of Governors, Westminster Children’s Hospital School, London. Past involvement includes numerous educational and medical advisory boards in Britain and Maryland.

She was a child psychotherapist and educator in London for twenty years and a lecturer at the University of Virginia in early childhood development.

Kevin Cox and his wife Joy reside on Kiawah Island.  He currently serves as Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Kiawah Conservancy.  He joined the Board in 2007.   Kevin retired from Merrill Lynch in 2006 as Senior Vice President, Global Head of Risk Management and Funding.  After his retirement he was elected to the Board of Merrill Lynch International Bank in Dublin, Ireland until 2012.

During his career at Merrill, he served as Managing Director and Head of Corporate Credit and Capital Commitments, Group Head of Leveraged Finance, Head of Investment Banking in Tokyo, Japan and as a Senior Relationship Manager for Corporate and Financial Sponsor clients in the U.S. and in Europe.

Kevin has served as a Trustee on the Board of The University of Richmond, where he is now an Emeritus Trustee.  He also served for twelve years on the Board of The Far Brook School, a K-8 School in Short Hills NJ, that taught through the arts.

Kevin received his BS from The University of Richmond and his MBA from The Darden School at The University of Virginia

The Catesby Trust is pleased to let you know about a special Catesby event taking place now in Atlanta at Oglethorpe University’s Museum of Art. “An Introduction to Mark Catesby: The Earliest Watercolor Drawings of North America’s Flora and Fauna, 1712-1726.”   In conjunction with Addison Publications of London, the Museum is displaying a collection of 16 of the remarkable facsimiles of some of Catesby’s most popular watercolors.  This exhibit allows guests the rare opportunity to enjoy and compare the vibrant colors of Catesby’s watercolors.  Complimenting the framed art is a copy of the stunning 4-volume limited edition reproduction of Catesby’s The Natural History of Carolinas, Georgia and the Bahamas all beautifully curated with wall text and a charming and informative video presentation about the creation of the Addison reproduction of Catesby’s monumental book by the book’s designer, Iain Bain.  The 3 minute video is available for viewing on line at https://vimeo.com/171631767  The exhibit will run through Sept 11, 2016.    

 

You’re invited to the Catesby Trust’s party!  Reserve November 3 now before your calendar begins filling with late year events .  It’s sure to be a lovely evening at the newly renovated and elegant Gibbes Museum of Art, Charleston SC.  Space will be limited.  We’ll keep you up to date as the gala nears.  For now, however, it promises to be an evening full of lively auctions, splendid food & drink and warm conversation.   Guests will have the opportunity to learn more about the Trust’s inspiring educational program being developed through an association with College of Charleston’s School of Education, South Carolina Educational Television and the Charleston County School District.  The program is focused on delivering better ways to learn for students of South Carolina and beyond.  “Creating a Better Way to Learn” is based on the forever curious and adventuresome endeavors of Mark Catesby

 

The Curious Mister Catesby: a “truly ingenious” naturalist explores new worlds has been awarded the 2016 Annual Literature Award by the Council of Botanical and Horticultural Libraries, the leading international, professional organization in the field of botanical and horticultural information services.  The award was announced at the Council’s annual meeting and presented to David Elliott, Co-Editor of The Curious Mister Catesby and Executive Director of the Catesby Trust.  Each year, the prestigious award is made to a work that makes a significant contribution to the literature of botany or horticulture.  The Curious Mister Catesby was selected from a field of 24 nominations.

 

 

 

Kay Etheridge, Professor of Biology at Gettysburg College in Pennsylvania, contributing author of The Curious Mister Catesby, and a founder and researcher of the Maria Sibylla Merian Society, has alerted us to a call for papers and an invitation to attend the Society’s much anticipated June 2017 conference Changing the Nature of Art and Science. Intersections with Maria Sibylla Merian. This could be of interest to many of our Catesby scholars and collectors.  The call for papers is in conjunction with the 2017 Amsterdam conference to celebrate all things Merian.  For complete information regarding submissions and to begin your plans to attend the conference, please visit:  www.ms-meriansociety.nl/research/call-for-papers/          

 

The Linnean Society of London, founded in 1788 and the world's leading natural history organization, is holding its first ever meeting in the United States.  It will at Harvard's prestigious Arnold Arboretum beginning Friday, May 6 through Sunday, May 8.  Among the many speakers from both sides of the Atlantic are three authors of chapters in The Curious Mister Catesby.   Aaron Bauer will talk about The Herpetology of the Beagle, Karen Reeds will cover John Banister, a Botanist in 17th Century Virginia, and David Elliott, Catesby Trust Executive Directo,r will offer his recent program, Mark Catesby's New Worlds Journey.

To learn more about the program and details about joining in this premier gathering, please contact Alicia Fernandez at the Linnean Society (alicia@linnean.org)

 

 

 

The Catesby Commemorative Trust and the University of the Pacific are proud to announce a new collaboration – Mark Catesby to John Muir: Carolina to California, an association to celebrate and support the study of western US natural history in the tradition of Catesby, Muir and other naturalists, artists and scientists of the Enlightenment era.  

 

The Catesby Trust and the University of the Pacific's John Muir Center and Holt-Atherton Library have begun to explore the legacies of Muir (on the occasion of his 178th birthday on April 21st) and Mark Catesby. Together we will investigate the several known parallels of the two naturalist-pioneers.  Their paths, a hundred years apart, took them along some of the same routes through the southeast US where they observed many of the same plants and collected many of the same specimens. 

 

Moving forward, our expectations are to share exciting discoveries and revealing new information about the lives and works of Mark Catesby and John Muir.

 

See the following links for the Muir papers and the John Muir Center:

http://www.pacific.edu/Library/Find/Holt-Atherton-Special-Collections/John-Muir-Papers.html

http://www.pacific.edu/Academics/Schools-and-Colleges/College-of-the-Pacific/About/Centers-and-Institutes/John-Muir-Center.html

 

 

 

It is gratifying to continue to receive critical acclaim of our book, The Curious Mister Catesby.  Recently published in the Biological Journal of the Linnean Society of London, a review offered by Mary Morris FLS remarks she found the book fascinating.  She particularly mentions “abundant beautiful coloured illustrations throughout the book.”  This is a much appreciated and most often recurring observation throughout the many reviews over the past year. 

Should you happen to find yourself in the area of Kiawah Island’s Sanctuary Hotel, please stop by Wells Gallery’s grand exhibition of Catesby’s work in facsimile from our friends at Addison Publications, London.  There’s much to see and to celebrate in honor of the 90 birthday of HM Queen Elizabeth II on April 21. 

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For those of you in the Atlanta area, you might want to visit the Atlanta History Center exhibit – The Curious Mister Catesby and the Elegant Mister Abbot: Early Naturalists in Georgia, 1722-1840 – on display through April 30, 2016.  This exhibition contains prints and original works as well as maps that record the changing shape of Georgia over the same time period.  It is presented in coordination with the University of Press, publisher of our book, The Curious Mister Catesby. They say it's the most comprehensive study to date of Mark Catesby, his work, and his continuing impact including significant new information discovered by the authors, which makes us feel good.

 

Should you happen to find yourself in the area of Kiawah Island’s Sanctuary Hotel please stop by Wells Gallery’s grand exhibition of Catesby’s work in facsimile from our friends at Addison Publications, London.  There’s much to see and to celebrate in honor of the 90 birthday of HM Queen Elizabeth II on April 21. 

 

The Trust is pleased and proud to announce the election of a new Trustee, Arete Swartz Warren, who brings to the Board remarkable experience in the advancement of historical and cultural organizations both here and abroad.   We look forward to her leadership and involvement as we expand our efforts toward fulfilling the Trust’s mission.

 

Arete Swartz Warren is an architectural historian, lecturer and author of numerous articles, as well as Glasshouses: An Architectural History of Greenhouses, Conservatories, and Orangeries (Rizzoli 1988) and Gardening by the Book: Celebrating 100 years of The Garden Club of America (Grolier-GCA 2013) which accompanied the major exhibition of GCA’s rare book collection at the Grolier Club in NYC.  She served on the New York State Board for Historic Preservation (1998-2010), the Empire State Plaza Art Commission, and former Mayor Giuliani’s Commission for Protocol in New York City. Mrs. Warren is past chairman of the National Council of the Ackland Art Museum at UNC- Chapel Hill and trustee emerita of the American Museum in Britain. She was the founding executive director of the Royal Oak Foundation and has held various positions in museums in the United States and Britain.  Mrs. Warren has served as National Chair of the Garden Club of America’s Garden History and Design Committee and two terms as its National Chairman of the Library Committee. She is past chairman of the Preservation League of New York State (2009-2012) and serves on a number of charitable boards.

 

Dr. Frances Welch, Dean of the College of Charleston's School of Education, Health, and Human Performance, the Dean of the College's Libraries, the Director of Education at South Carolina Educational Television, faculty members in the Department of Teacher Education, and curriculum specialists from the Charleston County School District have become very excited by The Curious Mister Catesby: a "truly ingenious” naturalist explores new worlds; and, as a result, generally in Mark Catesby. 

They are convinced Catesby and his work can be used in the forefront of a new educational approach being introduced here.  This is the expansion through elementary grades, and primarily in eighth grade, of the problem/project based teaching approach already used in some high school college-credit advanced placement courses.  Catesby-related material will be used in curriculum-related programs in science, history and art.

Further, it is intended to disseminate the results across the state through ETV's StreamlineSC website and nationally via PBS Learning Media.   With strong collaborative leadership, the team is developing a project plan and timeline for accomplishing this.  The Smithsonian Libraries' K-12 education specialist also will participate. 

The  Trust will be heavily involved in this project.

 

 

“Passion and talent seeps through the pages of The Curious Mister Catesby.”  How’s that for a just a bit of the accolades paid to the book?  This review was shared with us by Barney Lipscomb, Editor of the Journal of the Botanical Research Institute of Texas, and authored by his colleague, Alyssa Young, a historian and archivist associated with BRIT.   Ms. Young’s comprehensive, in-depth review particularly notes the high quality of the book’s construction and the illustrations.  In fact, Ms. Young noted her wish to see even more of Mr. Catesby’s captivating art.  She calls the book, “Far from a straight-forward biography… Meticulous research...  bound to appeal to a wide audience.”  As tempted as we may be to quote even more of the Journal review, we will stop and simply thank Alyssa Young and Barney Lipscomb for the kind and thoughtful words.

 

Matthew Cembrola, prolific, professional reviewer of primarily historical and scientific books, has offered a comprehensive and favorable review published on his blog, Matt’s Stats.   We especially are pleased to note that Mr. Cembrola commented on the quality of the production materials.  Not often mentioned, but certainly important aspects are the quality of the papers, the image reproductions, print and bindings.  We believe Mr. Catesby would have approved. 

Mr. Cembrola opines, “This is a large book, but one well worth digging into, getting better and better as you go along. It is about the size of a typical textbook, but with a pleasant feel and durable pages that stay open for the reader. Its beautiful design and fine historical research make this a landmark book and a huge contribution to the body of natural history's history.

 

The Trust is pleased to learn Kurt Klaus, our capable legal counsel since the Trust’s inception, has returned to private practice in the Washington, D.C. area. For the previous five years, Klaus has been associated with National Geographic Channels.  Congratulations and best of luck to Kurt in his return to private law practice. 

We are pleased with every one of the many favorable reviews The Curious Mister Catesby has received since its publication in 2015.  Among the most significant is a recent 2-1/4 pages written by James Compton and published in Curtis’s Botanical Magazine. The Royal Botanic Garden’s Kew has published this magazine since 1787.  The synergy with Mark Catesby and his work is clear!  The review simply could not be more on the mark.  Compton brings a deep understanding and comprehensive knowledge of Catesby’s work and his time in history.

It opens "The editors of this splendid book...have chosen precisely the right contributors to give the reader a real sense of the character and achievements of Mark Catesby's remarkable life." It ends later with "This book is a tour de force on the life of Mark Catesby."

 

 

It is gratifying to share the news that “The Curious Mister Catesby” continues to be reviewed in some of the most respected publications!  Mark Lynch, author and broadcast journalist, has written a recent comprehensive and favorable review for Bird Observer - The Birding Journal for New England

Mr. Lynch’s remarks conclude, "The Curious Mister Catesby is a sumptuous scholarly volume that will introduce the reader to a deeper understanding of who Mark Catesby was and what he accomplished.  It is a real must-have book for anyone interested in the history of North American natural history".

 

 

 

We would like to remind you of the several interesting Catesby Trust programs which are underway.  If, after reviewing the programs, you find them as interesting as we hope you will, please consider making a year-end, tax-exempt contribution to help in their continued growth and success.

1.            Developing  "The Curious Mister Catesby” school lesson plan kits which, paired with our documentary and our book, will support curriculum objectives in natural and environmental sciences as well as history.  This is being done in conjunction with the Dean of the School of Education, College of Charleston and the Director of Education at South Carolina Educational Television.

2.            Publication of a beautifully illustrated book by Emeritus Professor Alan Brush of the University of Connecticut and his wife MJ, a professional artist, on the current environmental status of 30 species described and illustrated by Mark Catesby.

3.            Cooperating with the Smithsonian in the publication of the very first full-color, full-size facsimile edition of Catesby's Natural History.

4.            Proposed development in cooperation with the California Academy of Sciences of programs exploring the complicated and dramatic environmental history of California.

Please visit the “Support Us” section of this website to make your contribution toward these programs and others to be introduced in the future. 

 

The Trust is delighted to present yet another rave review for the book, “The Curious Mister Catesby.”   The review is being published in The Canadian Field Naturalist and is written by Dr. C. Stuart Houston of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. Dr. Houston is an experienced reviewer and a great bird-banding enthusiast. 

Dr. Houston’s review takes an in depth view of the entire book delving into each of the chapters.  His concluding remarks are among the finest accolades the book has received. 

To quote, "The superb illustrations and the quality of the writing justify the modest expenditure for this magnificent book" and "It therefore belongs in every University library world-wide.  I recommend without reservation that naturalists buy it, savour it, treasure it and share it."

Dr. Houston’s remarks seem a perfect segue into suggesting if you're seeking Christmas present ideas, a copy of The Curious Mister Catesby: a "truly ingenious" naturalist explores new worlds is worth consideration.

 

NEW TRUSTEE – MRS. ROGER P. HANAHAN         

 

We are pleased to announce our newest Trustee, Mrs. Roger P. Hanahan of Charleston, South Carolina.  Bessie Hanahan is currently a member of the Board of Trustees for the National Tropical Botanical Garden, the Charleston Heritage Symposium, the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts, and the Preservation Society of Charleston, SC.   She has previously served on the Boards of the Spoleto Festival - USA, the South Carolina Historical Society, and the Charleston Community Concert Association.

The Catesby Trust is pleased to encourage your attendance at an important exhibit offered by Addison Publications, London and arranged by The Queen Elizabeth II Garden of New York.

“INTRODUCTION TO MARK CATESBY, 1682 -1749”

 Mark Murray Gallery Fine Arts , 159E 63rd Street , New York

September 15 – 19, 2015

Opening Preview, Tuesday, September 15, 6 – 8.30pm 

The occasion will mark the four-volume publication of Catesby’s Natural History of Carolina, Florida and the Bahama Islands. The 265 original watercolor drawings in the Royal Collection at Windsor Castle, now for the first time published in a four-volume facsimile with a precise resetting of the original English text.

The exhibition includes 16-framed facsimile watercolors and an example volume of the four-volume edition as well as the PBS film “The Curious Mister Catesby”

The exhibition also can be seen at Tower Hill Botanic Garden, Boylston, Massachusetts, in early November and then, in February, 2016, to the Filoli Garden, California.

For more information about these exhibits or to arrange an exhibit at another location, contact Nigel Frith at nigel.frith@addisonpublications.com

 

 

 

Mark Laird, who wrote the chapter in our book called Mark Catesby’s plant introductions and English gardens of the eighteenth century, has recently written a book entitled A Natural History of English Gardening. It is a beautiful book that includes additional detail on Catesby's work to introduce American species to English gardens.  Laird gives considerable credit to Charles Nelson for help on editing the book as well as "our" authors Kraig Adler, Kay Etheridge, Stephen Harris, Charlie Jarvis, Judith Magee, Florence Pieters, Henrietta Ryan, and the late James Reveal for advice in their areas of expertise.  Published by the Yale University Press, this handsomely illustrated 439 page book can be ordered through the YUP website or, as almost always, through Amazon.  Congratulations to Mark Laird on the publication of his fine book.

 

Catesby collectors and enthusiasts  - Significant Catesby materials are to be offered during Graham Arader’s September 19th auction!  To make the event even more important, Arader has made a special offer to the Catesby Trust; bidders may designate the Catesby Trust as the beneficiary of 20% of the hammer price of their purchases.  No strings attached.  If you’re interested in learning more about the Catesby collection being offered, please contact Janice Stanley at stellayaris@gmail.com for a copy of the Arader Auction catalog.

 

 

The Curious Mister Catesby’s first stateside academic review has been published this month in Huntia, A Journal of Botanical History and it’s a review we are quite pleased to receive.  It is written by librarian Charlotte Tancin of the Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation, Carnegie Mellon University.  We are especially proud of this one!
 

Ms Tancin concluded her review saying, “The Curious Mister Catesby is an important contribution to the history of natural history, and its editors and contributors are to be congratulated.  It is reasonably priced and would be a good addition to public and academic libraries, as well as a treat for individuals with an interest in history and natural history.”

 

Thank you, Charlotte Tancin, for your good and thoughtful words.

The Catesby Trust Board of Trustees 2015 – 2016 Executive Officers are announced:

President:  John Rashford, Charleston, SC

Vice President:  Charles Berolzheimer, Stockton, CA

Treasurer: Hugh C. Lane, Jr., Charleston, SC

Secretary:  Maurice Thompson, Charleston, SC

Executive Director:  David J. Elliott, Charleston, SC

We welcome our new officers with enthusiasm and best wishes for a productive and pleasant term of service.

Complete biographies are published on this web site in the ABOUT US section. 

We are proud to have these wise and influential individuals to guide the organization as we grow forward. 

It is with deep gratitude that we acknowledge Mrs. Charles Waring as she steps down as President of the Catesby Commemorative Trust Board of Trustees.  For more than a decade, the Trust has depended on Mrs. Waring’s unfailing enthusiasm and wisdom to guide us through the formation and growth of this organization.  She has been an integral and essential force behind the concept and production of both The Curious Mister Catesby film and book.  This organization will forever bear the indelible fingerprint of Mrs. Charles Waring.  Thank you, Jane. 

Author and essayist Ben Moise’s review of The Curious Mister Catesby was published in the Charleston, SC Post & Courier’s Sunday, June 21st edition.  We are very pleased to share a few of Mr. Moise’s well put thoughts and opinions. 

“The richly illustrated and thoughtfully edited volume is an excellent tribute to the influential work of English naturalist Mark Catesby.  It is also an important book, excellently put together and representative of a broad range of scholarship.

It is obvious on so many perspectives that this quality book is a labor of love and one that should have a broad reader appeal.  It is a worthy literary monument to a man whose passage through Colonial South Carolina reminds us of an almost intuitive sense of continuity, which speaks to our roots and to our connection with the land. “

We have come to so appreciate the work of reviewers who seriously study the books on which they comment.  Thank you Mr. Moise, for your kind words and for taking the time to understand the purpose of The Curious Mister Catesby, and thanks to the Post & Courier for publishing such a nice spread.  You may find the entire Moise review interesting.  The article can be read at

http://www.postandcourier.com/article/20150621/PC1201/150629957

Charles Nelson, our co-editor and trustee, had a very interesting public radio interview with an enthusiastic and well-informed host! Not only did the interviewer, Mark Lynch, reveal his wide knowledge of Catesby, but also clearly endorsed the book after reading and enjoying it.  Lynch, of New England’s WICN Public Radio, especially was pleased with the depth of information shared in The Curious Mister Catesby and was surprised at the amount of completely new information he discovered while studying the book in preparation for the Nelson interview.  We think it’s time well spent with these two gentlemen as they exchange information and discuss all things Catesby.  Thank you WICN and Mark Lynch for making Charles Nelson’s interview available for all to enjoy.  Here’s the link: http://wicn.org/podcasts/audio/e-charles-nelson-curious-mister-catesby

 

The Catesby Trust was honored to have Sir David Attenborough among our guests at the Linnean Society of London book signing event.  We are completely thrilled to learn Sir David has read and endorsed The Curious Mister Catesby with a variety of wonderfully complimentary accolades!  Thank you, Sir!

 

For the many who have attended one of The Curious Mister Catesby book tour events, you will have seen and been awed by the stunning facsimile edition of Catesby’s Natural History. The edition has been presented by our dear friends, Nigel and Julia Frith, on behalf of Addison Publications. 

If you’ve missed seeing the facsimile, you may learn more at the Addison Publications web site. www.addisonpublications.com.

With an exclusive print run of just 60 copies, the magic of Catesby’s Natural History has been painstakingly recreated and the last 20 copies are presented in four volumes together with Catesby’s own fascinating descriptions of each image. Hand-printed, craft-bound and finished with intricate gold leaf tooling, these luxurious leather volumes are produced by craft binderies based in Yorkshire and Oxfordshire.

The first facsimile edition of The Natural History is now housed at Windsor Castle as part of the Royal Collection.

Addison Publications also bound the highly-regarded special edition of The Curious Mister Catesby. Iain Bain, retired Director of Publications for the Tate Gallery, designed our special edition.  Addison covered it in handsome green gilt leather and Calligrapher, Joyce Gordon of Oxford, Ohio, added the dedication to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

 

We simply cannot resist sharing parts of Robert Salvo’s extensive book review of The Curious Mister Catesby for the Charleston Mercury newspaper.  It is particularly thoughtful and insightful.  We are deeply appreciative of Mr. Salvo’s understanding of the book and the Charleston Mercury’s continued support and attention.

 

The Curious Mister Catesby” manages to approach its subject in a manner both wide and deep by approaching naturalist Mark Catesby in the manner of an anthology.  Both general readers and those well versed in topics covered will find the volume enjoyable and enlightening.  Each of the book’s 22 chapters has a different author, each with a peerless background to discuss Mr. Catesby in his or her own area of expertise.

“The Curious Mister Catesby” is beautifully illustrated, exhaustively researched and lovingly compiled.  It is a must-have for libraries of natural history, those interested in the world of the early 18th-century South and lovers of wildlife art in general.

Chapters are vivid and distinct, each scene working together to produce a satisfying whole. 

This work draws the once-mysterious Catesby out of the shadows and, fittingly, displays him in vibrant living color. “

 

Along with the excellent review, the Mercury announced its sponsorship of a The Curious Mister Catesby book signing event. 

We all are invited to join the Mercury on June 4, 5-7pm, at the Preservation Society at the corner of King and Queen Streets, Charleston, SC.

We simply cannot resist sharing parts of Robert Salvo’s extensive book review of The Curious Mister Catesby for the Charleston Mercury newspaper.  It is particularly thoughtful and insightful.  We are deeply appreciative of Mr. Salvo’s understanding of the book and the Charleston Mercury’s continued support and attention.

 

The Curious Mister Catesby” manages to approach its subject in a manner both wide and deep by approaching naturalist Mark Catesby in the manner of an anthology.  Both general readers and those well versed in topics covered will find the volume enjoyable and enlightening.  Each of the book’s 22 chapters has a different author, each with a peerless background to discuss Mr. Catesby in his or her own area of expertise.

“The Curious Mister Catesby” is beautifully illustrated, exhaustively researched and lovingly compiled.  It is a must-have for libraries of natural history, those interested in the world of the early 18th-century South and lovers of wildlife art in general.

Chapters are vivid and distinct, each scene working together to produce a satisfying whole. 

This work draws the once-mysterious Catesby out of the shadows and, fittingly, displays him in vibrant living color. “

 

Along with the excellent review, the Mercury announced its sponsorship of a The Curious Mister Catesby book signing event. 

We all are invited to join the Mercury on June 4, 5-7pm, at the Preservation Society at the corner of King and Queen Streets, Charleston, SC.

For complete event details, Mr. Salvo’s entire review and other topics of interest, please visit our friends at www.charlestonmercury.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

The United Kingdom leg of The Curious Mister Catesby book tour is approaching quickly.   We are very pleased to know the US delegation numbers are impressive and, when combined with the many Catesby followers and friends in UK, attendance at the events is expected to be outstanding. 

Sunday, May 17, Mark Catesby will be remembered in evening prayers at 4pm at St. Giles Cripplegate, London. This was Catesby’s parish church for many years and where his four children were baptized.  Following the service there will be an informal cakes and tea reception in this beautiful medieval church.

Tuesday, May 19, at the esteemed Linnean Society of London, activities begin with tea at 5:30 followed by our Co-Editor Charles Nelson’s presentation at 6pm.  After Nelson, Catesby Trust Patron Sir Ghillean Prance will make his first address of the tour.  We all are excited to hear Sir Ghillean’s remarks and share the evening with this remarkable scholar and Catesby authority. 

Several book authors plan to attend this event and will join Nelson and Prance in a Q&A.  Among those are Kay Etheridge, Florence Pieters, Diana and Mike Preston.  They also will be available for a book signing and wine reception from 7 to 8pm.  This full and rewarding evening will be a celebration of The Curious Mister Catesby in London.  Seating is limited.  Reservations through Linnean Society, please.

Friday, May 22, The Gainsborough’s House of Sudbury, Suffolk, hosts the final stop of our most successful book tour.  And what an exciting evening this promises with special exhibits gathered from Catesby’s home locale and times.  Speakers will be Sir Ghillean Prance and Charles Nelson.  Authors Henrietta McBurney Ryan and Valerie Herbert plan to attend and join with David Elliott, Nelson and Prance in a Q&A session.  If the weather is good, there will be a reception in the garden and, of course, time for visiting and book signing.  For reservations, contact Liz Cooper, liz@gainsborough.org

The Catesby Trust is delighted to anticipate full houses at these events.  Don’t delay making reservations. 

"I have a copy and have just finished reading it for the first time. Book is very impressive. Well organized, documented and illustrated. It should be a reference "gem" for anyone working on the early natural scientists."

George H. Perbix, Retired Executive, World Birder

 

"The Curious Mister Catesby will stand for many years as the best critical analysis of his work, and of the groundbreaking natural science that his curiosity inspired."

Linda Lear, reviewed for NATURE, Naturalist, Author

 

“The Curious Mister Catesby” is a beautifully illustrated, fascinating look at a formative period in America’s history, and it’s bound to appeal to readers who appreciate the art as well as the science behind Catesby’s work.

Doug Childers, reviewed for The Richmond Times-Dispatch.

 

For the many who have attended one of The Curious Mister Catesby book tour events, you will have seen and been awed by the stunning facsimile edition of Catesby’s Natural History. The edition has been presented by our dear friends, Nigel and Julia Frith, on behalf of Addison Publications. 

If you’ve missed seeing the facsimile, it will be presented again at the upcoming UK book tour stops or you may learn more at the Addison Publications web site. www.addisonpublications.com.

With an exclusive print run of just 60 copies, the magic of Catesby’s Natural History has been painstakingly recreated and the last 20 copies are presented in four volumes together with Catesby’s own fascinating descriptions of each image. Hand-printed, craft-bound and finished with intricate gold leaf tooling, these luxurious leather volumes are produced by craft binderies based in Yorkshire and Oxfordshire.

The first facsimile edition of The Natural History is now housed at Windsor Castle as part of the Royal Collection.

Addison Publications also bound the highly-regarded special edition of The Curious Mister Catesby. Iain Bain, retired Director of Publications for the Tate Gallery, designed our special edition.  Addison covered it in handsome green gilt leather and Calligrapher, Joyce Gordon of Oxford, Ohio, added the dedication to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

 

The Curious Mister Catesby book tour will conclude our USA engagements with the much anticipated evening at San Francisco’s California Academy of Sciences.  The event is Thursday, April 30th, at 5pm. 

For reservations, contact Nicole Clark at nclark@calacademy.org.

Should you not have been able to attend any of the preceding book tour events, this will be the last prior to leaving for the UK and, certainly, this one is well worth traveling to attend.

The evening, which has been organized by Catesby Trust Board of Trustee’s Secretary Charles Berolzheimer, promises to be extraordinary; beginning with beautifully curated exhibits of Catesby etchings, along with a display of examples of Catesby’s species collections and, perhaps, several of the early editions of Catesby’s books.  Dr. Charles Nelson, Co-Editor, will lead the evening with an incredibly well-informed lecture based on his original Catesby research.  Catesby Trust Executive Director and Co-Editor David Elliott will follow with his insightful lecture and slide show.  There will be a time set aside for Q&A by the speakers as well as other Catesby’s experts attending the program.  You also may want to have your copy of The Curious Mister Catesby signed by one or several of the editors and authors who are expected to be participating in the event.  Books will be available for purchase at the event.

A special feature of our exceptional California book tour appearance is the opportunity to join in the California Academy of Sciences NIGHTLIFE program.  A regular event, NIGHTLIFE attracts a large audience of interested museum-goers to spend the evening touring and learning of the many features of this outstanding natural science facility.  Tonight our Catesby exhibits will be among the offering for guests.  Tickets are available through the CAS and include an open bar and entertainment. 

We continue to be so very grateful for the many favorable comments and reviews of The Curious Mister Catesby.  We are delighted to share comments published by AMAZON on their web site. 

The Curious Mister Catesby is an absorbing blend of early colonial history in the American Southeast and the Bahamas, with the rich fauna and flora the settlers freshly contained. Catesby emerges as one of the first true naturalists of the New World.”—E. O. Wilson, University Professor Emeritus of Entomology, Harvard University

“Mark Catesby, the English naturalist and artist, as well as his considerable accomplishments, is given new life in this well-written, multi-authored account. Emphasis is placed on Catesby’s travels in North America that led to his monumental volumes on the flora and fauna of Carolina, Florida, and the Bahamas. The book is an important addition to the library of the history of the natural history of colonial America.”—William D. Anderson Jr., Professor of Marine Biology, Grice Marine Biological Laboratory, College of Charleston

"A landmark book filled with introspective and concise essays, each developed with a richness of detail, revealing the absorbing portrait of a self-taught artist from Suffolk who had an insatiable curiosity about nature. Wonderfully readable, this classic is an engaging introduction to Catesby's timeless illustrations and to his keen observation of the natural world. Like an investigation by forensic scientists the contemplative and thorough scholarship of these authors reveals new insight into Catesby, his journeys, his peers, and the inexhaustible pursuit of botanical and zoological specimens in an eighteenth-century world."—Marian Hill, former president of the Garden Club of America

"The naturalist Catesby has been unfairly under represented. . . . He receives his due in this volume with essays by 26 authorities, primarily American and English academics, plus 238 color illustrations. . . . This work contains new material on the pioneering naturalist and artist and is thoroughly referenced with chapter notes and an extensive bibliography. Appendixes list all of Catesby’s paintings with modern scientific and common names for all plants and animals. This work of scholarships is a joy to behold. It will interest naturalists, art historians, and American historians." —Library Journal  

 

 

We’re on the road again following The Curious Mister Catesby book tour to Mark Catesby’s familiar territory – Charleston SC, Friday, April 24.  Charles Nelson and Leslie Overstreet will present to the Charleston Library Society, the South’s oldest cultural institution, beginning at 6p.  You are invited!  Simply call for a reservation.  We are pleased that David Elliott and contributing author, Mark Simpson will join in for a Q&A session and book signing.  Books will be available for purchase should you not have yours just yet!

The final east coast stop on our tour prior to heading to the west is Wednesday, April 29, in Decatur, GA, at the DeKalb County Public Library’s GA Center for the Book.  Charles Nelson will be the principal speaker to what promises to be a large and enthusiastic crowd of Catesby’s fans.  Our Executive Director, David Elliott, will present following Dr. Nelson.  Between these two speakers, expect to be entertained as both have such vast knowledge of Catesby’s life and work.  The Q&A should be most interesting! 

What truly excellent news from Amazon we have to share with you!  Amazon has awarded The Curious Mister Catesby with 5 Stars, that is FIVE stars. They go on to call it the #1 new release in U.S. colonial period history and #1 natural history release of the year.  “A book of timeless value.”  And, as if that weren’t exciting enough, Amazon then turned around and made the book one of their very select few available to “Look Inside!”  To understand how big this really is, please visit Amazon and read the review.  That sound you hear? – it’s buttons bursting. 

This week our Catesby Road Show welcomes friends to events at the Smithsonian in Washington, DC, and at the Grolier Club in NYC.  We anticipate with great excitement the stops to be made in Cincinnati, Ohio; Richmond, VA and Kiawah Island, SC. 

Sunday afternoon, April 19 at the Cincinnati Museum Center Auditorium promises to be one of the highlights of the entire tour.  Top notch planning has gone into filling each of the 300 places available to hear Charles Nelson and Leslie Overstreet speak and to have books signed by various authors attending.  We especially are pleased to have Trustee Hardy Eshbaugh in attendance. His remarkable participation and leadership have contributed enormously to the success of The Curious Mister Catesby.  

Moving to Richmond’s Wilton House Museum for Tuesday, April 21st, where Charles Nelson and Leslie Overstreet will present to the group.  An outdoor reception in the Museum’s fabulous and historic garden area will be a special treat on this spring afternoon. The Wilton also will have their magnificent collection of Catesby etchings available for viewing. 

Moving down the eastern seaboard, Thursday, April 23, will be spent with Kiawah Island, SC, property owners at The Sandcastle Center.  Books will be available for purchase and signing by various of the authors attending. Speakers will include David Elliott, Charles Nelson and Leslie Overstreet. Laura Vardell will exhibit a number of pieces from her collection of Catesby etchings.  As part of Kiawah Island Community Association’s “Our World” program, refreshments will be served and a Q & A period will be provided in this stunning ocean side venue. 

The entire team of contributors to The Curious Mister Catesby continues to be overjoyed by the stream of favorable reviews and messages that are being received.  Here are a few from the last several days:

 

Dr. John Kotz, retired Professor of Chemistry and Author.

WOW! Congratulations on a wonderful achievement! I received the Catesby book this afternoon and have turned every page.  The book will serve as a basic reference work to Catesby’s work for years to come.”

Henry T. Armistead, Reviewer. Formerly of Free Library of Philadelphia

“This work of scholarships is a joy to behold.  It will interest naturalists, art historians, and American historians.”

Michael and Diana Preston, historians and authors, London, UK

“By far the most beautiful book we’ve ever been associated with!”

Shauneen Hutchinson, editor Naturally Kiawah, Kiawah Conservancy

“This book is a rare combination.  It is masterfully edited, informative and educational but at the same time stunningly elegant and beautifully composed.”

 

 

 

  

 

Cherry blossoms and the first stop on The Curious Mister Catesby book tour are making for a big April show in Washington DC !  Esteemed scholar & Co-Editor, Charles Nelson, from the UK and world -renowned Catesby expert, Leslie Overstreet, Curator of Smithsonian Natural History Rare Books, will kick off our international book tour on April 14.  The much-anticipated affair will take place at the beautiful Baird Auditorium at the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History beginning at 5:30p. Following the Nelson and Overstreet presentations, there will be Q&A with our speakers and other Catesby experts involved with the creation of the book.  To top it off, a book signing opportunity and time to mix and mingle with Catesby friends from far and wide will conclude the evening.  The event is free and open to all. 

The second book tour stop is the elegant Grolier Club in NYC on Friday, April 17 beginning at 6p.  Reservations are a must! Contact Jan Stanley in our Charleston office at stellayaris@gmail.com.  Attendance will be limited to 150 guests who will hear presentations by Ms Overstreet and Dr. Nelson. Several of the book’s contributing authors will be available for a Q&A period and there will be time for a book signing and greetings. This promises to be a capacity-attended, marquee event of the tour.  We encourage early reservations.  

In case you can’t attend either of these events, there are other stops to include in your plans.  In days to come, check back here for event details, but mark your calendars now.

19 April – Cincinnati, Ohio

21 April  – Richmond, VA

23 April – Kiawah Island, SC

24 April – Charleston, SC

29 April – Decatur (Atlanta), GA

30 April – San Francisco, CA

19 May – London, UK

21May – Sudbury, UK

 

Early comments and reviews have begun arriving! We are humbled, a bit giddy and certainly thrilled! Please take just a moment to share in the excitement:

From Robert M Peck, Senior Fellow, Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, Drexel University

"The Curious Mr. Catesby is beautifully designed and produced and filled with important and interesting scholarship. Congratulations! Well done! I have been savoring it ever since my copy arrived a few weeks ago. The modest Mr. Catesby probably would be surprised by such a substantive volume on his accomplishments, but no doubt very proud!"

From our great friend and Catesby descendant, Joseph B. Cocke, Retired Engineer & Consultant of Clemson SC

“Amazing amount of new information discovered about Mark Catesby.”

From T.J. Nissen of Oxfordshire, UK
"Wow! What a beautiful, beautiful book - about an extraordinary man and a gifted artist"

***Please note: As previously announced, the book price increase will become effective this Wednesday, April 1. We’re very pleased to be able to hold the increase to only $3.00 when you purchase your book through this web site. Shipping charges and Garden Club of America prices are unchanged. 

 

11 March 2015

Pre Publication Book Price Held

David Elliott, Co-Editor of The Curious Mister Catesby, announced the pre publication book price, $39.95, will be held for the remainder of March.

You may order your personal copy or several this very minute on this web site.

Don’t delay.  Regular pricing of $44.95 will commence the first of April. No joke.

*Garden Club of America member pricing will be unchanged.

 

February 26, 2015

Congratulations to our Trustee, Dr. Charles Nelson! 

The Royal Horticultural Society, UK,  has awarded Dr. Nelson with the internationally prestigious Veitch Memorial Medal in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the advancement of the science and practice of horticulture.  The Veitch Memorial Medal, instituted in 1870, is regarded as being among the highest accolades in horticulture.  The Catesby Trust is honored to be associated with Dr. Nelson and benefits greatly from his expertise and prowess as Co-Editor of The Curious Mister Catesby, a “truly ingenious” naturalist explores new worlds. 

February 5, 2015

Catesby Trust President, Jane Waring, announced the election of two new Trustees to our Board.

Cynthia P. Neal and Charles Nelson were unanimously welcomed to the Board of Trustees at the February 5 annual meeting.  Complete biographies of the Trustees, along with photographs, are available in the “ABOUT US” section of this web site.  Ms Neal, who has been associated closely with the Trust since the inception, served as Producer/Director of the documentary, The Curious Mister Catesby.  Dr. Nelson currently is the much-esteemed Co-Editor of our book, The Curious Mister Catesby, a “truly ingenious” naturalist explores new worlds. 

President Waring also announced Sylvia W. Bacon has been named by the Board to fill the new position of Artistic Director to the Trust.  Mrs. Bacon has provided critical and continued support and direction to the Trust in all matters aesthetic.  Her biography and photograph can be found on our “ABOUT US” section of this web site.

Visit the summer exhibition “An Introduction to Mark Catesby” at the Petersburg Public Library.

For Information see: www.bamboocreativemedia.co.uk/Catesby

On June 25th, the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art of Yale University in London is hosting a seminar entitled “Catesby – 1 object 3 voices”. The speakers are our authors Henrietta McBurney, Leslie Overstreet, and Charles Jarvis. Reservations are essential, so contact Ella Fleming at efleming@paul-mellon-centre.ac.uk if you are interested in attending or want more information.

The Smithsonian Libraries unveils Once There Were Billions: Vanished Birds of North America at the National Museum of Natural History on June 24. This exhibition is a joint production of Smithsonian Libraries, Biodiversity Heritage Library, and the National Museum of Natural History. Take a look at the link and you’ll see Catesby’s illustrations of the Passenger Pigeon and the Heath Hen.

JOHN SCOULER (c1804-1871), SCOTTISH NATURALIST:  A LIFE, WITH TWO VOYAGES

Thursday, 5th June 2014, 6.30pm for 7.00pm, Graham Kerr Building, University of Glasgow.

The author, Charles Nelson, will deliver a lecture “Home and abroad with the nineteenth century Scottish naturalist John Scouler of Kilbarchan”

John Scouler (c1804-1871) made a remarkable two-year journey to Northwest America discovering plants and animals while travelling through the Atlantic and Pacific oceans to his destination, the Columbia River. His companion was the Glasgow botanist David Douglas where they discovered many plants new to science. Scouler then went to India, adding to his collections which helped found the Andersonian Museum in Glasgow. When not travelling he was Professor at Anderson’s College and in Dublin. His work contributed to anthropology, natural history and geology – truly a “man of parts”. The illustrated lecture will describe his adventures and legacy to natural science.

Dr E. Charles Nelson, FLS. After a PhD in Australia Charles returned to his native Ireland in 1975, to take up the position of horticultural taxonomist at the Irish National Botanic Gardens, Dublin. He is the author or editor of over 20 books and more than 150 research papers, most recently a prize-wining book on heathers. Since 1996 he has lived in England and worked as a freelance botanist, author and editor, and is currently acting as editor for the Catesby Commemorative Trust’s intended book The curious Mister Catesby – A Naturalist Explores New Worlds. In May 2013, he received the Society for the History of Natural History’s Founders’ Medal.

Exhibits relating to The Andersonian Museum from the Zoology Museum and Glasgow Museums herbarium can be viewed in The Hunterian (Zoology Museum) where refreshments will be served.

Catesby Exhibit – Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden & Library

The Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden & Library in Richmond, Virginia is currently displaying a collection of exceptional facsimiles of Mark Catesby’s original watercolors. The originals are at Windsor Castle, and it has been 17 years since there has even been a selection of these prints in the US. The complete set has never been here, so don’t miss your opportunity to see this exhibit which is on display now through June 1st. For more information, please call 804.262.9887 Ext. 240 or see http://www.lewisginter.org/blog/2014/04/23/mark-catesby-visits-the-library/

Merian Symposium

The Artis Library (Special Collections of the University of Amsterdam) will host a three day symposium entitled Exploring Maria Sibylla Merian on May 26-28, 2014. Speakers will include three authors of chapters in our forthcoming book The curious Mister Catesby: a “truly ingenious” naturalist explores new worlds – Kay Etheridge (Professor of Biology at Gettysburg College), Leslie K. Overstreet (Curator of Natural History – Rare Books, Smithsonian Libraries), and Florence F.J.M. Pieters (former Curator of the Artis Library, University of Amsterdam; presently guest researcher at Artis Library). More information on the symposium can be found at: http://exploringmerian.wikispaces.com/

UGAP will publish “The Curious Mister Catesby: A ‘Truly Ingenious Naturalist’ Explores News Worlds”

The University of Georgia Press has decided enthusiastically to publish “The curious Mister Catesby: a ‘truly ingenious’ naturalist explores new worlds”. We’ve been advised that the Press’ Faculty Board, comprised of senior scholars from a variety of fields, was particularly enthusiastic about the project and impressed by the rigor of our contributors’ scholarship.

Please Welcome Professor Sir Ghillean Prance FRS, VMH

We are pleased to announce that Professor Sir Ghillean Prance FRS, VMH has accepted appointment as Patron of the Catesby Commemorative Trust. Sir Ghillean was a keynote speaker at the Tercentennial and is author of a chapter in our book. Please see “Those Involved” for his biographical information.

Catesby Commemorative Trust Adds to Board of Directors

We are pleased to announce that both Thomas Schreck (Portola Valley, California) and Herbert E. Fitzgerald, III (Richmond, Virginia) have recently accepted our invitation to join the Catesby Commemorative Trust Board of Directors. Please see the “Those Involved” tab for photos and biographical information.