by Roger F.Vaughan B.A., B.Sc.
Robert Etheridge (3rd December 1819 - 18th December 1903) was born at Ross-on-Wye, Herefordshire, he was both a naturalist and geologist. Etheridge was Curator of the Museum of the Bristol Institution from January 1851 until July 1857. He became an officer with the Geological Survey of Great Britain (1857) and palaeontologist (1869) with the Geological Survey. He was the Assistant Keeper in the Department of Geology at the British Museum (Natural History) between 1881 and 1891.
Etheridge published in the Cotteswold Club Proceedings on the Rhaetic Beds of Garden Cliff at Westbury on Severn, the structure of the north part of the Bristol coal field and on the Devonian rocks of the Watchett area.
On the 17th August 1880, Etheridge went with the Club to the "Speedwell Pits" on the western side of the Kingswood Coal-field and at the evening meeting his health was drunk as he now "occupied the distinguished position as President of the Geological Society of London and he said "that in the estimation of men of science the [Cotteswold] Club held a position at the head of all kindred societies".
His interests covered the Jurassic invertebrates from Britain and the Himalayas,and British Palaeozoic fossils and plants. His collections of Palaeozoic and Jurassic fossils from the Bristol District are in the Natural History Museum, along with some manuscripts. A collection of his British fossils were donated to the Yorkshire Philosophical Society in 1878.
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