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Photograph of Fred Birch

Photograph of Fred Birch

Catalogue number: WP1/6/9

Photograph of Wallace's young naturalist friend Fred Birch, dated July 1899.

Fred Birch was a young naturalist who corresponded with Wallace over many years. In 1899 Birch lived in Liverpool, but later in his career he travelled to the tropics. He sought advice from Wallace on where to collect insects and how to sell them.

Wallace had a great many letters from friends, scientists and members of the public. That he took great trouble to reply to and help Birch shows Wallace as polite and selfless. He had a boundless enthusiasm for natural history, and was eager to pass on his years of experience to the next generation.

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Wallace Letters Online

Letter to Alfred Russel Wallace from the Royal Society, about his Darwin Medal award

View high resolution scans and transcripts of Alfred Russel Wallace's correspondence, including all surviving letters between him and Charles Darwin.

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