It's been a while since I posted here. When I first started writing this blog way back in 2009, there were still not that many sites devoted to women missing from the history books; the forgotten or little-known, and the completely unheralded women who did something remarkable in their own way but were always forced to walk in the shadow of men.
I am glad to say that since then a plethora of information is now available as other researchers rediscover their stories and share them with others, although there are always going to be more and some women will forever be elusive depending on when or where they lived or what paltry records of their lives were left behind.
Just this week, I read this interesting blog by June Watson on Northumberland Archives about Emma, Lady Tankerville, who deserves to be better-known for her scientific mind as well as her exquisite botanical drawings.
|The only available portrait of Emma. See Wikipedia|
Admittedly she was an aristocrat with important connections and not many ordinary mothers with a big family would have the resources to find the time to indulge in her interests. Sir Joseph Banks was a good friend and, according to the blog ..."Banks personally named a new Chinese swamp-orchid in honour of Emma, the Phaius tankervilleae. Emma was recorded as the first person to successfully cultivate the orchid after its introduction to England in 1778."
For anyone living in the area, the Northumberland Archives advises that a display of Emma's work from her time on the island of Madeira will be exhibited 18-26 September 2021 at Alnwick Garden in collaboration with the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
|The first orchid cultivated in England. See Wikipedia|