The London Zoo Curator With 4 Species Of Frog Named After Her

Laura Reynolds
By Laura Reynolds Last edited 14 months ago
The London Zoo Curator With 4 Species Of Frog Named After Her

© The Trustees of the Natural History Museum, London.

Lucy Evelyn Cheesman, or Evelyn Cheesman as she is more commonly known, was quite a woman.

Her legacy includes having four species of frog and a moth skink named in her honour.

Cheesman was born in 1881 — the same year as the Natural History Museum opened — interesting, as she later donated over 70,000 specimens to the museum, mainly insects and plants gathered from her travels round the world. She specialised in the South Pacific region.

Among her achievements are an OBE for services to science and her position as the first female curator at London Zoo.

More controversially, she often travelled alone on her research trips, in regions of the world where even men were reluctant to go solo.  Her last expedition, to Vanuatu, took place after she had a hip replacement.

Cheesman also found time to write 16 books, and in 2013 Kew Gardens credited her with discovering a previously unidentified species of orchid.

Evelyn Cheesman's life

Last Updated 28 September 2016

Greg Tingey

ONLY an OBE - note the general lack of awards for such a life ....
However, it was probably just as well that the vets were sexist bastards, otherwise she would probably never have got into entomology & botany ....