Henry Hyett Howell: Difference between revisions

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Latest revision as of 17:33, 31 August 2020

Pioneers of BGS - Home A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z



Date Details
1834 Born July 13th at Prinknash Park, Gloucester. Son of T.J. Howell, Judge Advocate at Gibraltar. Educated at the College School, Gloucester and King’s College, London. Took “Applied Science”, including geology, under D.T. Ansted.
1850 Joined Geological Survey as Assistant Geologist.
Worked in the Midlands, also North Gloucester, contributed to Memoir on Geology around Cheltenham (1851).
1855 Transferred to Scotland. Worked in Berwick, Haddington, and Edinburgh. Mapped Mid and East Lothian and Fife Coalfields.
1857 Promoted to Geologist.
1859 Memoir “Warwickshire Coalfield”.
1860 Memoir “Part of Leicestershire” (with Aveline).
1861 Memoir “Neighbourhood of Edinburgh” (with Geikie).
Transferred to England. Mapped Jurassic rocks in Northants, Bedford and Huntingdon (1inch).
1866 Memoir “East Lothian” (with Geikie and Young).
Also 6inch maps of Edinburgh and Haddington Coalfields.
Began survey of Northumberland and Durham Coalfield.
1867 Took over superintendence of work in north-east Counties.
1869 Gave evidence on Northumberland and Durham Coalfield before Royal Commissioners.
1872 Made District Surveyor.
1882 Made Director for Scotland.
1888 Made Director for Britain. Mapping of the Isle of Man commenced.
1899 Retired.
1915 Died.

Biographies and obituaries

Woodward, A.S. Obituary - Henry Hyatt Howell, born 1834, died 1915. [In Anniversary Address.]. Proceedings of the Geological Society in Quarterly Journal of the Geological Society. v. 72 p.lx. 1916

Geological Magazine (1899) p. 433


BGS archives

Ref No Title Description
GSM/DC/A/C/4/248, 277 H H Howell: Letters of appointment.
GSM/DC/A/C/6/422 H H Howell: Letters of promotion.
GSM/DC/A/C/8/135 Mentioned in letter of R.I. Murchison.
GSM/DC/A/C/8/177,295 H H Howell: Letters of promotion.
GSM/DC/A/C/23/278 H H Howell: Letter on coal in Durham.
GSM/DR Directors Papers The following records form the personal and scientific papers of the Director's of the Survey. They have been arranged alphabetically.

The structure of the Survey has changed several times since its formation under de la Beche. It was recognised early on that an Assistant Director was required along with a number of District Surveyors to help administer the work. Below the post of Director-General there were two Local Directors (England & Wales and Scotland). Under Geikie however, the Local Director for Scotland was abolished (?) and a Senior Director for GB appointed - H.H Howell, though he had very little control in practice. Below this post were two District Surveyors. The lack of promotional opportunites eventually led to the appointment of the Wharton Committee to look into the structure of the Survey. Following the Wharton Report the post of Director was to be supported by two 'Assistants to the Director' and seven District Geologists (five in the filed and two specialists - one Petrographer and one Palaeontologist)

GSM/DR/Ge Archibald Geikie Geikie was born in 1835. He joined the Survey in 1855 and became Director for Scotland in 1867. He was also the first Professor of Geology at the University of Edinburgh. His primary responsibility upon appointment as Director was to complete the mapping of the British Isles and wind up the Survey. He was keen to complete the mapping of Scotland and transferred staff from the England and Wales districts to Scotland for this purpose. Although H.H.Howell was appointed Director for Scotland, he worked mainly in the North of England and Geikie continued to supervise all survey work in Scotland. When Howell retired in 1899, Geikie did not appoint a successor.

Geikie began a series of stratigraphical memoirs, intended to be a comprehensive investigation of the rocks of a specific formation such as the Jurassic or Cretaceous. This differed from the usual regional memoirs which described the geology of an area and marked a significant departure in Survey publications. The first of these memoirs was 'The Pliocene Deposits of Britain' by C.Reid, in 1890. Geikie also contributed to the science of petrography and microscopic petrology within the Survey and set up a basic chemical laboratory in Edinburgh to undertake rock slicing and analysis. He appointed petrologists to the staff including J.J.H.Teall, F.H.Hatch, W.W.Watts and J.S.Hyland. Geikie also encouraged photography within the Survey and collected a large series of photographs of Scotland which were drawn on for memoirs and his own book 'The Ancient Volcanoes of Great Britain' published in 1897. During the last six months of his directorship, a Committee was established to enquire into the organisation and staff of the Geological Survey & Museum and report on its progress. It was chaired by J L Wharton and among other things it reorganised the staffing structure of the Survey to provide improved promotional opportunities to geologists.

GSM/DR/Sb/4/1 Correspondence and papers inc letters from E.B.Bailey, Bisat, and Howell
GSM/DR/Sb/4/13 Correspondence, notes and drafts relating to "A Revision of the Fauna of the North Welsh Conocoryphe viola Beds implying a a Lower Cambrian Age" By B Howell and C J Stubblefield
GSM/DR/Sb/7/1 Photographs 1) B.F. Howell, E.S. Cobbold, R. Kozlowski, C.E. Ressel in Poland 1931 2) R. Richter at View Edge, Shropshire, September 1936.; 3) B.A.A.S excursion. Party consists of J.V. Harrison, W.T. Gordon, Gregory of Leicester and Mr.Bailey Photograph taken by Mr. Bulman, 1936; 4) W.G. Fearnsides, 1936; 5) Examining core samples in the courtyard of the Geological Survey museum, South Kensington, 1945
GSM/DR/Sb/7/3 Photographs and letter 1) E.S.Cobbold at Watling House, Shropshire, c1930 2) 1) E.S.Cobbold at Watling House, Shropshire, c1930; 2) G Delepine and Sir Arthur Smith Woodward, 1938; 3) T H Clark and B F Howell, 1939; 4) R Ruedemann , 1939; 5) Letter from W W Watts to Stubblefield, 1937
GSM/GL/Br/5 Correspondence from Barrow to: Clough, Flett, Peach, Howell, S.V.Wood and others. Letters about geological succession in Scotland and about boulder clay of Yorkshire.
GSM/GL/Bw/29/88 H H Howell: Letter on J. Lucas.
GSM/GX/Z/101 Howell, H G