Fonds MSS 184 - A.H. Reginald Buller fonds

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A.H. Reginald Buller fonds

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  • 1874-1944 (Creation)
    Buller, A.H. Reginald

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Physical description

2.5 m. of textual records and ephemera
175 lithograph wallcharts
162 watercolour wallcharts
2 posters

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Biographical history

Arthur Henry Reginald Buller was born August 14, 1874 to Alban Gardner Buller and Mary Jane Higgins in Moseley, Birmingham, England. He was the fifth of seven children. Buller attended a boarding school in Birmingham and then attended Queen's College, Taunton where he developed his love of natural history. To obtain his bachelor's degree, Buller attended Mason Science College, a University of London affiliate (B.Sc. in 1896). While there he was awarded the Science Research Fellowship from the Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 and used it to further his studies in Germany. He studied at Leipzig University from 1897-1899 under the supervision of Wilhelm Pfeffer and obtained his PhD. Following that, studied under Robert Hartig at the Forstbotanisches Institute until 1901 and worked at the British Association table at the Stazione Zoologica in Naples during the summers of 1900 and 1901. He then returned to the University of Birmingham as an assistant lecturer and completed his DSc in 1903 while working.

In 1904, Buller was appointed the first professor of Botany and Geology at the University of Manitoba, one of the original six professors hired by the University. Buller was integral in developing the scientific community in Winnipeg and creating a laboratory and research based scientific educational program at the University of Manitoba. A tireless worker, Buller won international recognition for his work on fungi (mycology) and wheat rust (plant pathology). Buller developed a vast network of colleagues and friends and maintained extensive correspondence, which the University of Manitoba Archives now holds. He also actively campaigned to focus public attention upon the University's problems, including the inadequacy of its downtown campus. Buller served as Head of the Botany Department until his retirement in 1936, after which he became Professor Emeritus.

He was awarded an L.L.B. from the University of Manitoba in 1924 and was made a professor emeritus on his retirement in 1936. In 1963, the Science Building at the University of Manitoba was renamed the Buller Biological Laboratories. Among his many awards and achievements, Buller was president of the Botanical Society of America in 1928, and vice-president in 1926. He acted as vice-president of the Mycological Society of America in 1936. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 1909 and President of the Society in 1927. He was awarded the Flavelle Medal in 1929. In 1937 Buller became a member of the Royal Society of London and winner of its Royal Medal.

Honorary degrees came from many universities, including a D.Sc. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1933, a D.L. from the University of Calcutta in 1937, and an L.L.D. from Saskatchewan in 1928. Buller served as President of the British Mycological Society in 1913, President of the Canadian Phytopathological Society in 1920, and President of the Botanical Society of America in 1928. He died in Winnipeg on 3 July 1944.

Custodial history

A2004-025 was transferred in April 2004 by Library & Archives of Canada. A2008-62 was donated in 2008 by Linda LaBlanc. A2013-143 (SC) was transferred in June 2013 by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Cereal Research Centre. A2014-003 was transferred in January 2014 by Sean O'Hara.

Scope and content

(A2004-25) The accession consists of material Buller created mostly during his tenure University of Manitoba. The correspondence includes letters, postcards, and telegrams from personal and professional contacts. There are also a number of photographs, newspaper clippings, and ephemera. Notably, the accession includes extensive correspondence with publishers and book sellers.
Additionally, the accession includes Buller's collection of hand-painted watercolour wall charts and mass-produced wallchart designed by Hans T. Gussow. A majority of these wallcharts were painted by Buller himself or Stanley Chruchward or Charles Lowe.(A2008-062) This accession includes personal correspondence from Buller's during post-graduate education and during his early years in Winnipeg. It also includes a dance invitation and dance card. (A2013-143 SC) This accession holds various textual records of Buller's including his applications to several lecturer positions and his obituary in Nature by Guy Bisby.
There are also some publication drafts for a Flora of Manitoba with W.A. Burman and Fungi of Manitoba with Guy Bisby.
Also included are some ephemera of pins, tags, and badges. (A2014-003) This accession includes Buller's collection of mass-produced lithograph wallcharts and two posters.

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  • English

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There are no restrictions on access to this material.

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Finding aids

A printed finding aid is available in the Archives reading room and pdf of the finding aid can be downloaded from the link below.

We gratefully acknowledge the financial assistance of the Ralph & Doreen Estey Family Endowment Fund Collection in the creation of this finding aid.

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Past accruals include: A1998-031, A2004-025 (Correspondence series), A2008-062
No further accruals to this fonds are expected.

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Inventory for A2004-025 was prepared by Julianna Trivers & Jon Nordland (May 2003 & July 2004)

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