Collecting localities



Biographical data


Parkinson, Richard


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


Born: 1844, Augustenburg, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany. 

Died: 1909, Herbertshöhe, New Britain, Bismarck Archipelago.



Was first in Samoa and went to the Bismarck Archipelago in 1882; in December of that year he assisted in founding the first plantation at Ralum, New Britain. From about 1890-91 in the employ of the German New Guinea Company.

Author of some books and ethnographical papers on his stay in the Pacific.1

Some plants were named in his honour.2


Collecting localities:1

Bismarck Archipelago, N of NE. New Guinea. After a 2 years’ voyage to New Zealand, the Viti (= Fiji) and Tonga Islands, arriving in Samoa (Nov. 1877), staying till 1882. Sailing from Sydney (early in Oct. 1882) and via Mioko to Neu Pommern (= New Britain), settling at Ralum plantation, Blanche Bay. He made many tours by boat along the E. and part of the N. coast of New Britain; visiting Kaije Volcano; failing endeavour to climb the Wuna Kokor (= Beautemps-Beaupré Mt., later named Varzinberg) on account of the hostile attitude of the natives (Aug. 1883); 2nd, then successful, endeavour (1884); on another occasion visiting the S. slope of this mountain and the woody valley of the Mana Wiwio, between Kaile and Waikiri; boat tour (Apr. 1885) along the E. coast of New Britain, discovering Put-Put Harbour; ascent of the Wuna Kokor (Aug. 1885), then rebaptized Varzinberg; probably in 1887 a tour by boat to some of the island-groups situated E and SE of New Ireland, visiting Mortlock Islands, Ontong Java (Lord Howe Isl.), Stewart, Solomon, and Carteret Islands.3-1893. Tour by boat in company with Kärnbach (see there) (July 12-20).-1894. Early in the year sailing with Bishop Louis Couppé from Kinigunan on the Blanche Bay, along the E. coast of New Britain, going up part of the Karawat River.4-1895. Ontong Java and Tasman Islands.5 -1896. End of March with Alb. Hahl to the E. coast of Gazelle Peninsula, making a trip in the Baining Mts (Apr. 12); back to Herbertshöhe (13).6 -1898. In the ‘Möwe’ under Capt. Merten to the western boundary of former Kaiser-Wilhelmsland (N. New Guinea); at the mouth of the Babué River (Neumayer Fluss) (July 6) and during 5 weeks surveying 30 sea-miles of the coast.7-1905. Tour to St Matthias Isl. (Apr. 23), Kerue (21) and Tench Isl. (Apr. 18 for the 1st time).8

Of part of his tours no dates are mentioned.



Herb. Melbourne [MEL]; some of the plants were described.9 Herb. Sydney [NSW]: 367 plants Bismarck Archipelago (pres. 1901); dupl. in Herb. Berl. [B] (pres. 1901). Some ferns in Herb. Bonaparte (= Paris [P]); 7 grasses in U.S. Nat. Herb. Wash. [US].

His collections contain many new species, unfortunately collected without mentioning precise localities.



(1) R. Parkinson: ‘Beiträge zur Kenntnis des Deutschen Schutzgebietes in der Südsee’ (Mitt. Geogr. Ges. Hamburg 1887, p. 201-283); ‘Im Bismarck Archipel’ (Leipzig 1887); some ethnographical papers in Internat. Arch. Ethnogr. Leiden, vols 1894, 1897 and 1900; ‘Dreissig Jahre in der Südsee’ (Stuttgart 1907, with portr.).

(2) cf. also Polypodium parkinsonia Baker n. sp. in Ann. Bot. 5, 1891, p. 480; Baker received the specimen in 1887 through the intermediary of F. von Mueller.

(3) cf. Wichmann, Entd. Gesch. N.G., in Nova Guinea 22, p. 460-461.

(4) cf. Ann. de Notre-Dame du Sacré-Coeur 30, 1895, p. 94-99 (non vidi).

(5) cf. Internat. Arch. f. Ethnogr. Leiden 10, 1897 and l.c. 11, 1898.

(6) cf. Nachr. Kais. Wilh. Land 12,1896, p. 46-50.

(7) cf. Internat. Arch. Ethnogr. Leiden 13, 1900, p. 18-54, pl. 15-22; and Kühne in Deutsch. Kolon. Zeit. N.F. 11, 1898, p. 399-402.

(8) R. Parkinson: ‘St. Matthias und die Inseln Kerué and Tench’ (Globus 88, 1905, p. 69-72).

(9) By F. von Mueller in Deser. Not. Pap. Pl., and also: ‘Two new species of Sterculia discovered by R. Parkinson in New Britain’ (Austr. Journ. Pharmac. Fehr. 1887); by Kränzlin in Oesterr. Bot. Zeitschr. 44, 1894, p. 257, 337.


biographical data:

Globus 79, 1901, p. 239-240; cf. Parkinson’s books, l.c. sub Liter. 1; Backer, Verkl. Woordenb., 1936.