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fraseri - The mystery Mr. Fraser (1 Viewer)

Björn Bergenholtz

... also known as "Calalp"
Martin, the "Lewis Fraser" mentioned in your post 20 and our Louis Fraser is clearly the same person. Both noted as; curator of the Zoological Society of London, participant in The Niger Expedition [1841-42] and Author of Zoologia Typica [1845-1849 ] etc. etc.

And note, if connected to Canada, in some, whatever way, any English, British, Scottish "Lewis" could easily turn into a "Louis" by the partly French-speaking Canadians. If this is the case here, I do not know.

If our Louis Fraser (1819/1820–fl. 1883) somehow was related to "William Lewis Fraser (1841-1905)" is also unknown (to me). But like you wrote, they could be ... or not.
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Taphrospilus

Well-known member
  • Glaucis Fraseri Gould 1861 here a synonym for Band-tailed barbthroat (Threnetes ruckeri). Plate was part of delivery 24 from 1861 here.
  • Tympanistria fraseri, Bonaparte 1855 here a synonym to Tambourine dove (Turtur tympanistria)
  • Genus Fraseria Bonaparte 1854 here footnote introduced for African Forest-Flycatcher Fraseria ocreata (Strickland, 1844)

I am not sure about a syn. for Cyanomitra obscura as in HBW Alive mentioned.

One more:

here

  • Celeopicus Fraseri Malherbe 1862 a synonym to Celeus loricatus.
 

Taphrospilus

Well-known member
For the sake of completeness:

According here

  • Nectarinia fraseri Dohrn, 1866 here is the synonym for Cyanomitra obscura

Thank's to James to clarify this one.
 

Taphrospilus

Well-known member
@ Paul: As you seem to have cet´rtain access to other sources, do you have the exact live dates of Louis Fraser?
 

PScofield

Well-known member
Louis Fraser is a tricky chap!

I can tell you that his life was not a constant one - although he was born to a Gent (Hugh) and his marriage was a good one by the time his daughter Mary Alice was born in 1847 they were in the workhouse.

In 1861 they were living in Manchester.

In 1865 Louis was in The Brompton Road SW London listed as a bird stuffer.

I think the Canada link is spurious - there are several Louis but all are different families.

I like others can find no reliable record after 1866.
 

Björn Bergenholtz

... also known as "Calalp"
Martin, I think you misinterpret that phrase; "LOUIS FRASER, late Curator of the Society", only says he was late as Curator, that he'd finished his job as Curator to/for the Zoological Society (see Justin's #7), it doesn't say that he was late in life.
 

Taphrospilus

Well-known member
OK. Maybe to trace him from his son Oscar Louis Fraser Assistent at Indian Museum in Calcutta? Here as:

The whole of the operations of transfusion into the juglar vein were performed by him, with the help of Mr. Oscar Fraser, then Assistant Prosector, and now appointed Osteologist to the Museum at Calcutta, ....

Or here elected Fellow. I am not sure if Alexander Fraser might be related to him. See title page here.
 
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James Jobling

Well-known member
From my Key MS:
fraseri • Louis Fraser (?1819-?1883) English zoologist, Curator of ZSL Museum 1832-1846, Curator of Knowsley Collection 1848-1851, Vice-Consul to Dahomey 1851-1853, collector in Nigeria 1841-1842, Ecuador 1857, California 1860, and Florida 1883 (syn. Celeus loricatus, Conirostrum, syn. Conirostrum binghami, syn. Cyanomitra obscura, Deleornis, Myiothlypis, Stizorhina, syn. Threnetes ruckeri, syn. Turtur tympanistria).
Not forgetting Fraseria and fraserii.
 

PScofield

Well-known member
Well, with the site down had a chance to do a bit more on Louis.

Firstly the 1851 Census tells me two things firstly he was Scottish and second he may have been younger than we thought (ie born c. 1825).

So I found a baptism record for a Louis Fraser

29 December 1825
Reay, Caithness, Scotland, United Kingdom (in the Heart of the Fraser Clan)
To Hugh Fraser and Janet MacKay
This record was hidden due to a transcription error (Luis - female).

So it is possible that he was baptized years after his birth but given the fact he stated that he was 26 in 1851 suggests to me he probably was born in 1825. The reason for a false date of birth on his marriage certificate is probably because he was not of age at the time of his marriage (1844).

I also found that the interpretation that Hugh - Louis's father being a sailor in Wikipedia is slightly incorrect. Louis's marriage record identifies Hugh as a Marine - i.e. a member of The Royal Marines!

Now the next new evidence is that he was in England alive in 1867 (street directory) but a Louis Fraser was granted naturalisation in Illinois in 1868.

The next unequivocal evidence I can find is a paragraph in Harpers weekly for 24th May 1873:


also here


where it states that our man was elderly and destitute and living in British Columbia and requesting assistance from "Men of Science". The idea he was elderly (when he should have been 48) is odd but there is NO doubt this is Louis Fraser - Naturalist.

Then the last record I can find is in the 1881 Canadian Census where I find a record for a Louis Fraser (a Saloon Keeper) in downtown Victoria, BC. So perhaps the "men of science" gave enough to give him a new living? One reason to believe this is our Louis is that he gives his religion as Masonic and Ancestry.com does indeed give evidence that he was a Mason (a member of the St Johns Lodge in 1857).


By searching Vertnet and the Cambridge University Museum catalogues, I do find records for specimens collected in Florida in 1883 by a Mr Fraser but I do question whether this really could be our chap. Does a destitute elderly "saloon keeper" from BC really travel 5200 miles to collect 3 birds in Florida in 1883? There were several other Frasers collecting in North America in the late 19th C.

So I suggest:

fraseri • Louis Fraser (?1825-?1883) Scottish zoologist, Curator of ZSL Museum 1832-1846, Curator of Knowsley Collection 1848-1851, Vice-Consul to Dahomey 1851-1853, collector in Nigeria 1841-1842, Ecuador 1857, California 1860, and perhaps Florida 1883.

Oscar Louis Fraser was born in the last quarter of 1848 and died in Calcutta on 1 Nov 1894. He is apparently not significant to any etymologies..
 
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Björn Bergenholtz

... also known as "Calalp"
...

So I suggest:

fraseri • Louis Fraser (?1825-?1883) Scottish zoologist, Curator of ZSL Museum 1832-1846, Curator of Knowsley Collection 1848-1851, Vice-Consul to Dahomey 1851-1853, collector in Nigeria 1841-1842, Ecuador 1857, California 1860, and perhaps Florida 1883.

...
To me, if born in about "1825", that's an awfully young "Curator of ZSL Museum 1832- ..." ?
 

PScofield

Well-known member
I agree that 7 is a young "curator" but so is 12 (if born in 1820). I think as Justin says he worked his way up to curator - perhaps beginning in 1832 as "broom boy" - Remember that there were no child labour laws back then. See 1861 census attached giving age 36 and birthplace Scotland. This is during the period he had a shop in Westminster St James.

P
 

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Taphrospilus

Well-known member
Maybe the birth record of Oscar Louis gives some hint when Louis was born?

@ Paul: Why not moving to Florida if he e.g. suffered from the climatic conditions in British Columbia?
 

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