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Reverend Arthur C. Waghorne


The Reverend Waghorne (1851-1890) was a Church of England missionary for the Society for the Propogation of the Gospel. He arrived in Newfoundland, from England, in 1875, and eventually became Newfoundland's first resident botanist.

During his Church travels, from 1887 onward, he collected algae, mosses and liverworts, lichens, fungi and vascular plants with considerable zeal.

In truth, he probably spent more time working on botany than he did on preaching and ministering, although he was, nevertheless, a very devoted and hard-working Man of God.

While generally known as a botanist, Waghorne had no actual training in the field. This fact he compensated for by corresponding extensively with numerous botanical experts, both in North America and Europe, to whom he invariably sent collections for identification. His main objective was simply to compile and publish lists of species from Newfoundland and Labrador - an almost unexplored region at the time (Waghorne 1895, 1896, 1898).

Waghorne's specimens are now scattered far and wide, largely because he sold sets of them to collecters and museums worldwide, in order to support his meagre Church stipend, and, further, to support his many, selfless, charitable efforts.

For a time, Waghorne turned his sights towards Labrador, and, during 1893 and 1894, he did considerable collecting on the "limestone" areas of the "Labrador Straits". Later, he found himself stationed for a while (1895-1899) in the Bay of Islands (at Birchy Cove - now Curling), a plant-rich place where "limestone" outcrops abound.

Unfortunately, his Church duties never carried him to the main "limestone barrens" in the Port au Port area, or on the Great Northern Peninsula.

An example of a Waghorne collection from a "limestone" locality: Robbins' Milkvetch Astragalus robbinsii var. minor from L'Anse-Amour, Labrador, August 2, 1894. [Link may be very slow. Click "+" button to enlarge. Click variously on the image to pan around it.]






[Page last updated: January 7, 2012]





















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