James Finlay Weir Johnston
Johnston founded a grammar school in Durham in 1825, which later merged with other local schools, such as Brandon and Bowburn, to form a single comprehensive school for the area, named Durham Johnston Comprehensive School, preserving James Finlay Weir Johnston's name.
He acquired a fortune at the time of his marriage in 1830, and was able to devote himself to studying chemistry. He visited the chemist J. J. Berzelius in Sweden and was a co-founder of the British Association for the Advancement of Science.
He was appointed reader in Chemistry and Mineralogy at Durham University on its foundation in 1833, but continued to reside in Edinburgh out of term. From 1847, his assistant was Augustus Voelcker who also lectured in agricultural chemistry at Durham University.
He wrote the Catechism of Agricultural Chemistry (1844), since translated into most European languages, and the Chemistry of Common Life (1853–1855).
In 1830 he married the daughter of Thomas Ridley of Durham.
- Biography at the Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online
- "Johnston, James Finlay Weir". Dictionary of National Biography. London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1900.
- David Knight, ‘Johnston, James Finlay Weir (1796–1855)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004
- BIOGRAPHICAL INDEX OF FORMER FELLOWS OF THE ROYAL SOCIETY OF EDINBURGH 1783 – 2002 (PDF). The Royal Society of Edinburgh. July 2006. ISBN 0 902 198 84 X.
- John Christopher Augustus Voelcker, (1899) Oxford Dictionary of National Biography
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- This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Wood, James, ed. (1907). "article name needed". The Nuttall Encyclopædia. London and New York: Frederick Warne.
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