Collecting localities



Biographical data


MacFarlane, Samuel


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

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


Born: 1837, Johnstone, England. Died: 1911, Southport, England.



Reverend of the London Missionary Society, educated at Bedford; appointed to the Loyalty Islands, ordained in 1858, and stationed on Lifu. In July 1874 he arrived at Somerset, the headquarters of the New Guinea Mission; in 1877 he settled on Murray Island. From 1874 onwards he made numerous voyages of inspection, and of exploration of the coast and rivers of the mainland. In 1887 the degree of L.L.D. was conferred upon him by the University of St Andrew’s, and in the same year he withdrew from the New Guinea Mission and the foreign work of the Society; till 1892 a Deputation Agent in England, after which he retired from active work.1

He is commemorated in Dendrobium macfarlanii F.Muell.


Collecting localities:

SE. New Guinea. 1871. With A.W. Murray sailing from Mare (one of the Loyalty Islands) to E. New Guinea, visiting several neighbouring islands and points on the mainland; Hood’s Point, Darnley Island, Warrior Island (July 5), Tauan Isl. (6), Saibai Swampy, Cape York, Tauan Isl. (15), Katau on the mainland (17), Warrior Isl. (18), Darnley Isl. (24), Yule Isl. (28), Redscar Bay (3); sailing from Redscar Bay (Aug. 7); returned to Lifu (Nov. 2).2-1874. From Somerset (Sept. 22) with M. Murray to visit Redscar Bay and islands in the Straits (returning Oct. 8). From Cape York by boat, touching at several islands in Torres Strait (Oct. 15-20), e.g. Jervis and Banks Island.3-1875. From Somerset making some tours in the ‘Ellengowan’: Darnley Island (mid-Jan.), crossing the island and climbing the highest mountain; Port Moresby; via Bura to Lea-Lea and Caution Bay; Yule Island.4 To Port Moresby again (March 20); Manu-Manu; Yule Island; Somerset (Apr. 1).5 Islands in Torres Strait (Apr. 10-May 2): Banks Isl., Jervis Isl., Donau and Saibai, Boigu (Talbot Isl.); Murray Isl. (May l6); sailing (June 12) for Port Moresby via Ugar, Erub and Yule Isl. (staying 22-30); tour by boat in eastern direction to Hood Point, with Lawes.6 Sailing from Somerset (Aug. 25); Boigu (30); ascending the Mai Kusa (= Baxter River) (31) with O.C. Stone,7 With H.M. Chester and L.M. d’Albertis to the Fly River: leaving Somerset (Nov. 29); mouth Binaturi (Dec. 2); Dalrymple Isl. (Damut) (4); Param (Bampton Isl.) (5); mouth Fly delta (6); ascending the Fly to Ellengowan Island; downstream (15-21); back at Somerset (28).8-1876. In the ‘Ellengowan’ from Somerset (March 21) to Port Moresby; long tour along the SE. coast in company with W.G. Lawes and others: Hood Bay (Apr. 4), Shallow Bay, Cloudy Bay, Orangerie Bay, Isabel Bay, Farn Bay, Catamaran Bay, China Strait, Possession Bay; Port Moresby (Apr. 22-29); via Yule Island back to Somerset.9 Islands in the Torres Strait (Aug. 2-21): Banks Isl., Jervis Isl., Murray Isl., etc.10-1877. Sailing with Chalmers from Sydney (Sept. 20) on a New Guinea tour (itiner. cf. sub Chalmers). Accompanied Chalmers to Stacey Isl., off South Cape, leaving Dec. 4 to return to Murray Island (arrival 15).-1882. After an interval of some years revisiting the Fly River.-1883. Milne Bay (Apr., Sept., Nov.).-1885. Mouth of the Fly River (July), with C.H. Hartmann (see there).



Herb. Melbourne [MEL]; some plants described by F. von Mueller.11 Grass dupl. in U.S. Nat. Herb. Wash. [US].



(1) Author of ‘Among the Cannibals of New Guinea’ (London 1888); ‘Notes from New Guinea’ (Athenaeum Dec. 1876, p. 725-726); etc.

(2) A.W. Murray & S. MacFarlane: ‘Journal of a missionary voyage to New Guinea’ (London 1872).

(3) cf. Chron. Land. Miss. Soc. 1875, p. 44-52.

(4) cf. l.c. p. 209-214.

(5) cf. l.c. p. 215-217.

(6) cf. l.c. p. 218-243.

(7) cf. O.C. Stone in Proc. Roy. Geogr. Soc. Land. 20, 1875, p. 92-109.

(8) S. MacFarlane: ‘Ascent of the Fly River, New Guinea’ (Proc. Roy. Geogr. Soc. Land. 20, 1876, p. 253-266); cf. also in Chron. Land. Miss. Soc. 1876, p. 93-97.

(9) cf. Proc. Roy. Geogr. Soc. Lond. 21,1876/77, p. 350-360, and Globus 30, 1877, p. 140-142, 150-153.

(10) cf. Chron. Land. Miss. Soc. 1877, p. 12-14.

(11) In ‘Descr. Not. Pap. Pl.’ vol. l, pts 2-3.


biographical data:

In ‘A Register of Missionaries, Deputations, etc.’ (London, Land. Miss. Soc., 1923) p. 72-73; Backer, Verkl. Woordenb., 1936.