Collecting localities



Biographical data


Brass, Leonard John



(Source: Flora Malesiana ser. 1, 1: Cyclopaedia of collectors)

(Source: Flora Malesiana ser. 1, 5: Cyclopaedia of collectors, Supplement I)

(Source: Flora Malesiana ser. 1, 8: Cyclopaedia of collectors, Supplement II)


Born: 1900, Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia. Died: 1971, Cairns, Australia.



Assistant in the Queensland Herbarium, 1918-19; for some years engaged in cattle ranching activities in N. Queensland and the Northern Territory of Australia. In 1925-26 he made an expedition to Papua for the Arnold Arboretum, and in 1932-33 he visited the British Solomon Islands for the same institution. Joining Archbold expeditions of the American Museum of Natural History in 1933, he was responsible for the plant collections made on the three large-scale and successful biological expeditions to New Guinea which were led and financed by Richard Archbold (see below). In 1946, on leave of absence from Archbold expeditions, he represented the New York Botanical Garden on the Vernay expedition to Nyasaland.

In 1948 a member of the ‘Archbold Cape York Expedition’ to North Australia.

Was awarded a honorary Dr’s degree from Florida University in 1962.

In May 1966 he retired from the Archbold Expeditions and Museums and settled in Australia, where he was offered a honorary curatorship of the Herbarium of the North Queensland Naturalist’s Club at Cairns.

His name has been given to about 90 species and the following genera of plants: Brassiophoenix Burret, Brassiodendron C.K.Allen, and Brassiantha A.C.Sm.


Collecting localities:













Arnold Arboretum expedition, 1925-26, to Papua, SE. NewGuinea:1 Port Moresby (Oct. 15-19, 1925); by boat to Kapa Kapa and Kalo (20); Hula (20-21); overland journey Port Moresby to Kapa Kapa: Laloki River and Rona (30); Mt Warirata (31); Bisiatabu (Nov. 6-15); Sogeri (16-20); Iawarere (21-27); laritari (28-29); Borabere (30-Dec. 1); Uniori (2); Budatobara (2-5); Kapa Kapa (6-15); Port Moresby and vicinity (16-Febr. 1, 1926); visit to the Gulf Division: based at Ihu, Vailala River (6-26), with excursions to Lepokera (16), Orokolo Bay (20), Maira (21), Hohoro (22), and Aroara (25); visit to the Purari Delta, Delta Division, on vessel ‘Vaiviri’: Wame River Sawmill (28-March 1); Kapaina River and Village (2); 2nd visit to the Gulf Division: again based at Ihu (3-18), and from there a canoe trip (9-16) was made up the Vailala River as far as Hewa, 3 days travel from Ihu: Kira (9), Akauda (10), Hewa (11-14), returned down river to Lowa, Upoia and Akauda (15); Kira and Ihu (16); journey on foot along the beach from mouth of the Vailala River to Kerema; Vailala River Estuary (19-21); Maclatchie Point (20): Keuru (22); Kerema and vicinity (23-Apr. 2), with trips to The Cupola (24 and Apr. 1); Murua River, by canoe (March 26-29); and Siroura River, by canoe (30); Port Moresby (Apr. 3-27); visit to the Eastern Division: based at Domara (May 4-June 6); trip to the summit of the Owen Stanley Range: Mowabula, on Mori River (May 8-10); Kuraudi, on Aisa River (11-17); camp near head of U-uma River (18-20); summit of the range between Mt Clarence and Mt Brown (19); return journey to Kuraudi (21-22); Mowabula (23) and Domara (24); excursions from Domara to Bongwina River (27, June I and 2); Lower Mori River (28); Domara River (31, June 4); Sandbank Bay (June 3); Port Moresby hinterland: Laloki River (16-17); Hombron Bluff (17).-Archbold expedition, 1933-34 in Papua, SE. New Guinea.2 Port Moresby (March 2-6, 1933); by motor lorry to Ro(u)na (7), collecting there until March 17; the next day return to Port Moresby; to Kairuku, Yule Isl. (30), crossing to Aropokina and making base camp at Baroka (Apr. 3); Brass went on to Diene (or Dieni) (19-May 10, coll. from 450-700 m), the other members of the expedition setting out for Ononge (May 7) and making camp on the E. slope of Mt Tafa (Nemodi); Brass arriving there on May 24; breaking camp (June 5); Ononge (6); Urunu (9); Fro Creek camp (10); Gerenda (camp site below Mt Albert Edward), staying there (16­July 12), visiting the summit of Mt Edward (Wharton Range) (June 21); Neon Basin, Wharton Range (July 13); return to Murray Pass (14), staying until Aug. 15; Urunu, Vanapa Valley (16-17); Ononge (17-18); camp on the W. slope of Mt Tafa at 2400 m (21-Sept. 24), making a trip to Mave (Sept. 6-8); back at Mondo (26), Bella Vista (27) and near Mafulu (28), where collected until Nov. 20, visiting the Auga River below camp and the top ridge above; Deva Deva (Nov. 21), Matsika (22); Kubuna on Kubuna River (toll. Nov. 24-Dec. 16); Baroka (17-18); Yule Isl. (19-26); Port Moresby (27). Visit to the lowlands W of the Fly River: leaving Port Moresby by coastal boat (Jan. 3, 1934); various stops made, e.g. at Kikori on the Kikori River, Daru (Jan. 8); trip up the Benituri River and up the Oriomo River to Wuroi and Dogwa (= Dagwa) (12-15) ; first collecting camp at Wuroi (Jan. 17-Febr. 13); Dagwa, between Oriomo River and Head of the Binaturi River (Febr. 14-27); Wuroi (Febr. 28-March 2); Daru Isl. (5-8); visit to mainland opposite Daru (10); leaving for Port Moresby (15, arriving on the 20th), making stop at the delta Saw Mills up the river above Port Romilly (16).-2nd Archbold expedition, 1936-37, in Papua, SE. New Guinea:3 Port Moresby (Febr. 6-13, 1936); Rona (14-15) ; Port Moresby (19) ; by vessel (20-24) to the Western Division, Isl. Daru (staying Febr. 24-March 30; part of the expedition arriving later), making occasional trips to the mainland (31) and out towards the reefs in Torres Straits; Daru Isl. (Apr. 1-9), mainland opposite (10); collecting at Mabad(a)uan, mouth of the Pahoturi River (13-23); leaving Daru (May 2) in the ‘Maira’ to the Upper Fly; 30 miles below EverilI Junction (6); camp 5 miles below Palmer Junction (May 13-June 3); Black River camp, Upper Fly (June 4-Aug. 3); return to Middle Fly; Oroville camp (Aug. 8-12); Lake Daviumbu camp (Aug. 16-Sept. 30); Sturt Island camp (Oct. 3-Nov. 4); Madiri (5); E. bank of the estuary of the Fly (6-8); Gaima (8-22); Daru Isl. (28-30); visit to area between Fly River and border of Dutch New Guinea: via the Mai Kussa River (Dec. 1) on the Wassi Kussa River, Tarara (Dec. 3-12); trip NW to Tumbuke (13) and to Penzara between the Morehead and Wassi Kussa River (13-19); via Tumbuke (20-21) and Tarara (21-31); trip by row-boat up east branch of Wassi Kussa to c. 10 miles above Tarara (31-Jan. 5, 1937), Tarara (6-18); trip down Wassi Kusa by row-boat to c. 10 miles below Tarara (19-20); Tarara (21-31); Daru Isl. (Febr. 1-15); Port Moresby (23); leaving New Guinea in the first week of March. During the first part of the expedition a plane was used, which was wrecked, however, on July 9 on the road of Port Moresby.-3rd Archbold expedition, 1938-39, in Dutch New Guinea4 (combined American-Dutch exp., cf. also sub Meijer Drees and Ch. Versteegh). Coastal base at Hollandia (Apr. 23-June 1938), collecting at Tabati, the vicinity of Hollandia (June 13-16, 18-25, 27-29, July 1-12), Jautefa Bay (June 17), some plants near Lake Sentani (26), lower E. slopes of Cyclops Mts (30); Lake Habbema camp (July 22-Sept. 4), making trips to the N. and NE. slopes of Mt Wilhelmina (Aug. 15-17) etc.; camps on the northern slopes of Mt Wilhelmina at 3400 m (Sept. 5), 3560 m (6-16), 3800 m (17-28), collecting up to 4350 m; 3560 m camp (29); Wamena River (3200 m), N. slopes Mt Wilhelmina (30); Lake Habbema camp (30-Oct. 7); valley of the Balim River (Grand Valley), 2800 m camp (Oct. 8-24), patrol of the Bele and Etlanti Valley (25-29); 2800 m camp (30-Nov. 8); Nov. 9 moving to camp at 2200 m alt. on the right-hand bank of the Bele River, a tributary of the Balim (vacated on Dec. 5); journey through lower Bele Valley and the Balim Valley (5-7); Balim base camp (8-19), Hollandia (by air, 20); Bernhard camp on the Idenburgh River (Jan. 3, 1939); camps at 1800 m (7-31), 2150 m (Febr. 1-9), 1600 m (11-12), 1200 m (Febr. 13-March 3), and 850 m (4-Apr. 5); Bernhard camp (Apr. 6-May 19); by air to Hollandia (10), leaving by boat (20).-4th Archbold expedition, 1953, in far eastern parts of Papua (March-Nov.)9: Cape Vogel Peninsula, from a base at Menapi (March 21-May 4) and from Dabora on the S. coast (Apr. 7-10); a strip of territory extending from the N. coast at Baiawa, Moi Biri Bay (May 6-11); Mt Dayman, N. slopes, Maneau Range (2790 m) (May 17-July 26); Biniguni camp, Gwariu River (July 27-Aug. 13); Peria Creek, Kwagira River (Aug. 14-Sept. 6); D’Entrecasteaux Group, Goodenough Island: Bolu Bolu (Sept. 22­Oct. 4) ; E. slopes of Goodenough Island up to about 1750 m on the central mountains (Oct. 7-30); Wakonai (Oct. 31-Nov. 1); Fergusson Island: Mapamoiwa (Nov. 2).-5th Archbold Expedition, 1956,10 in far eastern parts of Papua (Apr.-Dec.). D’Entrecasteaux Group, Normanby Island: Waikaiuna (Apr. 11-28), Lebudowa River (19, 21, 26), mountains behind Waikaiuna Bay (23), Mt Pabinama (May 1-12, up to summit 950 m alt.); Butai Creek, Lebudowa River (12, 15); Waikaiuna (14-18); Fergusson Island: Iamelele (24-June 1), Saibutu (May 24), mountains S of Agamoia (June l), mountains between Agamoia and Ailuluai (7-IS), Aigamoia (19-23), Lake Lavu (21); Niubuwo and between Niubuwo and Fagululu (25); Deidei, Gomwa Bay (July 3-5) ; Louisiades: Misima Isl. (July 18-Aug. 11), Sudest Isl. (Aug. 16-Sept. 23), Rossel Isl. (Sept. 28-Oct. 28); Woodlark Island (Nov. 3-21); Normanby Island: Sewataitai (25); mainland of Papua, Milne Bay Distr.: Dawa Dawa (Dec. 3-5), Modewa Bay (12-20), Gara River (15), Harala-ama River (18).-6th Archbold Expedition, 1959.11 From Lae to summit Mt Kaindi (Mar. 25-May 28); to Mt Wilhelm (15.000 ft) (June 6-Aug. 1); Mt Otto from Kotuni on the S. slopes, Mt Michael, Purosa in the Okapa region; Kratke Mts with ascent to Mt Elandora (8500 ft) (Aug. 2-Nov. 9); Upper Markham Valley (Nov. 9-29).



From the exp. 1925-26 in Herb. Arn. Arbor. [A]: ± 1165 nos (501-1664); the plants were classified by C.T. White; most of the papers on the botanical results were published in the Journ. of the Arnold Arboretum.5

From the exp. 1933-34 in Herb. N.Y Bot. Gard. [NY]: 2500 nos (ranging from 3551-6077, composing about 15.000 specimens); the plants were identified in the said institution and most of the results em­bodied in the periodical Brittonia;6 150 dupl. in U.S. Nat. Herb. Wash. [US].

From the exp. 1936-37 in Herb. Arn. Arbor. [A]: 2500 nos (6201-8800) (Fly river), partly in Gray Herb. [GH]; the results published principally in the Journal of the Arnold Arboretum.7

From the exp. 1938-39 in Herb. Arn. Arbor. [A]: about 5500 nos (composing ± 15.000 specimens, nos 8801-14132),8 partly in Gray Herb. [GH]; Brass collected an amount of numbers together with Ch. Versteegh (see there); before Oct. 1938 Dr Meijer Drees (see there) assisted in general botanizing on Mt Wilhelmina; some plants were collected by Capt. Teerink (see there).

Dupl. of the expeditions e.g. in N.Y. Bot. Gard. [NY]; Berl. [B] (650 nos pres. 1929-31, 1934-35), Paris [P], Brussels [BR], Vienna [W], Stockholm [S], Uppsala [UPS], Utrecht [U] (140 Cyper. Fly River exp.), Singapore [SING], Brisbane [BRI], Buitenzorg [BO] (± 1500 nos), Kew [K], Leiden [L] (110 nos pres. by the Arn. Arbor. in 1938/39, 208 in 1939/40). Of the 1938-39 exp. sets will be presented to Herb. Bog. [BO] and Leiden [L].

From the exp. 1953 in Herb. Arn. Arbor. [A]: 3445 nos (incl. 620 bryophytes); dupl. set will be deposited in For. Herb. Lae [LAE] and in Herb. Leiden [L]; Herb. Leiden [L] bought 3174 nos of the 1956 exp. (incl. 729 crypt.).

12 Exp. 1959 in U.S. Nat. Herb. [US]: 3622 nos incl. 342 cellular crypt.; dupl. will be distributed in the future. Moss dupl. in Herb. Bartram, Farlow.



(1) cf. Journ. Arn. Arbor. 8, 1927, p. 202, and Ann. Rep. Papua for 1925/26, p. 60. Other data from L.J. Brass personally.

(2) R. Archbold & A.L. Rand: ‘Summary of the 1933-1934 Papuan Expedition’ (Bull. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist. 68, 1935, p. 527-579, pl. 28-46).

(3) R. Archbold & A.L. Rand: ‘With plane and radio in stone age New Guinea (Archbold 1936 expedition, Upper Fly River)’ (Nat. Hist. Mag. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist. 11, 1937, p. 567-576, many fig.).

L.J. Brass: Botanical notes of the Archbold Expedition IX. ‘Notes on the vegetation of the Fly and Wassi Kussa rivers, Brit. N.G.’ (Journ. Arn. Arbor. 19, 1938, p. 175-190, pl. 221-223, w. map)

R. Archbold & A.L. Rand: ‘New Guinea Expedition, Fly River Area, 1936-37’ (New York 1940).

A.L. Rand & L.J. Brass: Results of the Archbold expeditions no 29. ‘Summary of the 1936-1937 New Guinea expedition’ (Bull. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist. 77, 1940, p. 341-380, pl. 21-42, 2 maps).

(4) L.J. Brass: ‘The 1938-39 expedition to the snow mountains, Netherlands New Guinea’ (Journ. Arn. Arbor. 22, 1941, p. 271-295, 297-342, pl. l-7); ‘Stone age agriculture in New Guinea’ (Geogr. Review 31, 1941, p. 555-569, map, 14 ill.).

R. Archbold: ‘Unknown New Guinea’ (Nation. Geogr. Mag. 79, 1941, p. 315-344, w. ill.).

cf. also Tijdschr. K.N.A.G. 1938, p. 505, 838, 957-959 + map; l.c. 1939, p. 321-342 + maps; 1940, p. 233-247.

R. Archbold, A.L. Rand & L.J. Brass: Results of the Archbold Expeditions no 41. ‘Summary of the 1938-1939 New Guinea expedition’ (Bull. Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist. 79, I942, p. I97-288, pl. I-35, 3 maps).

(5) Principally by C.T. White (Pteridophytes by C.B. Copeland) in Journ. Arn. Arbor. 10, 1929. Some new species by S. Moore in Journ. Bot. 65, 1927, p. 241-247, 265-272 and in l.c. 67, 1929, p. 49-51.

Grasses by A.S. Hitchcock in Proc. Linn. Soc. N.S.W. 54, 1929, p. 145-146.

Palms by Burret in Journ. Arn. Arbor. 12, 1931, p. 264-269.

A. Rehder: ‘A supplement to C.T. White: Ligneous plants collected in the Territory of Papua in 1925-26 by L.J. Brass (Journ. Arn. Arbor. 14, 1933, p. 62-67).

(6) Over the heading ‘Botanical results of the Archbold Expedition’ in several vols of Brittonia; e.g. the Loranthaceae by B.H. Danser, the ferns by C. Christensen (the latter in l.c. 2, 1937, p. 265-317).

Polygonaceae by B.H. Danser in Bull. Jard. Bot. Buit. sér. 3, vol. 13, 1935, p. 429-431. Lycopodium by H. Nessel in Fedde Repert. 39, 1935, p. 61-71.

Palmae by Burret in Notizbl. Bert. Dahl. 12, 1935, p. 309-348 and l.c. 13, 1936, p. 65-101.

Verbenaceae by Eva Beer & H.J. Lam in Blumea 2, 1936, p. 221-228, cf. also l.c. p. 31.

Podocarpaceae by R. Pilger in Engl. Bot. Jahrb. 68, 1937, p. 244-247.

Compositae by J. Mattfeld in Engl. Bot. Jahrb. 68, 1937, p. 248-268.

Loranthaceae by B.H. Danser in Blumea 3, 1938, p. 37-59.

cf. also sub 8.

(7) Many papers concerning the results of the exp. in Journ. Arn. Arbor. 20-24, 1939-43, by E.D. Merrill, L.M. Perry, etc.

Ferns by E.B. Copeland in Philip. Journ. Sci. 73, 1940, p. 345-347, 457-469.

Ericaceae by H. Sleumer in Engl. Bot. Jahrb. 70, 1940, p. 95-124.

Proteaceae by H. Sleumer in l.c. p. 125-148.

Cyperaceae by G. Kükenthal in l.c. p. 463-468.

Mosses by E.B. Bartram in Farlowia 1, 1943, p. 41-47, 2 pl., 30 fig.

L.O. Williams: ‘Orchidaceae Novae Guinea I’ (Bot. Mus. Leafl. Harv. Univ. 12, no 5, 1946, p. 149-172, pl. 21-23); ‘Notes on the family of Corsiaceae’ (ibid. p. 179-182, pl. 24).

(8) cf. papers by E.D. Merrill, L.M. Perry, A.C. Smith, and others in Journ. Arn. Arbor. 22-28, 1941-47 (and eventually in later volumes).

Ferns by E.B. Copeland in Philip. Journ. Sci. 75, 1940, p. 347-361, and in l.c. 76, 1941, p. 23-25 and in ibid. 78, 1949, p. 5-40, pl. 1-6; cf. also Grammitidaceae in Philip. J. Sc. 81, 1952, p. 81-118, 10 pl.

Ericaceae by H. Sleumer in Engl. Bot. Jahrb. 72, 1942, p. 207-269.

L.O. Williams: ‘Notes on the family Corsiaceae’ (Bot. Mus. Leafl. Harv. Univ. 12, no 5, 1946, p. 179-182, pl. 24).

Cyperaceae by S.T. Blake in J. Arn. Arb. 35, 1954, p. 204-238.

(9) L.J. Brass: Results of the Archbold Expeditions no 75. ‘Summary of the Fourth Archbold Expedition to New Guinea (1953)’ (Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist. 111, 1956, p. 77-152, fig. 1, pl. 10-21).

Mosses by E.B. Bartram in Brittonia 9, 1957, p. 32-56.

(10) L.J. Brass: ‘Results of the Archbold Expeditions no. 79’. ‘Summary of the fifth Archbold Expedition to New Guinea, 1956-1957’ (Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist. 118, 1959, p. 1-70, 1 map, 8 photogr.).

Mosses by E.B. Bartram in Blumea 10, 1960, p. 142-150.

(11) Cf. extensive data in Fl. Mal. Bull. no 15, 1960, p. 717-718.

L.J. Brass: ‘Results of the Archbold Expeditions no. 86’. ‘Summary of the sixth Archbold Expedition to New Guinea, 1959’ (Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist. 127, 1964, p. 145-216, map, photogr.).

(12) For a complete comprehensive list, see Fl. Mal. Bull. no 21, 1966, p. 1422-1425.


biographical data:

J. Arn. Arb. 52, 1971, p. 695-698, portr.