James Murray (biologist)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

James Murray with Adélie Penguin chick (Nimrod-Expedition)

Dr James Murray FRSE (21 July 1865, Glasgow – February 1914)[1] was a biologist and explorer.

Early life and education[edit]

He was born at 50 Charlotte Street in Glasgow the son of William Murray, a grocer, and his wife, Janet McMurray. He studied Zoology at Glasgow University and took art classes at Glasgow School of Art.[2]

Career[edit]

In 1902, he assisted the oceanographer, Sir John Murray, with a bathymetric survey of Scottish freshwater lochs. Murray undertook both biological and bathymetric surveys.[3] In particular, he contributed to tardigrade and bdelloid rotifer science: describing 113 species and forma of rotifer and 66 species of tardigrade.

In July 1907, he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. His proposers were Sir John Murray, George Chrystal, James Burgess and Thomas Nicol Johnston. He was awarded the Society's Neil Prize for the period 1909-11.[4]

In 1907, at the age of 41, he served under Shackleton on the Nimrod Expedition where he was in charge of the base camp. In 1913, he co-wrote a book about the expedition, titled Antarctic Days,[5] with George Edward Marston (1882–1940), a fellow member of the expedition.

In 1911, aged 46, he joined with the explorer Percy Fawcett, Henry Costin and Henry Manley to explore and chart the jungle in the region of the Peru-Bolivian border. Murray, unused to the rigors of the tropical regions, fared poorly. Eventually Fawcett diverted the expedition to get Murray out, such was his condition. He briefly dropped out of sight, having been recovering in a house in Tambopata. He reached La Paz in 1912, learning that he was thought to have died.

Murray, angry at perceived mistreatment at Fawcett's hands, wanted to sue. However friends at the Royal Geographical Society advised him against it.

Final expedition and disappearance[edit]

In June 1913, he joined a Canadian scientific expedition to the Arctic aboard the ill-fated Karluk as oceanographer. The ship became trapped in the Arctic ice in August 1913. Eventually, Murray mutinied against the captain and departed across the ice with three others. None of the four was ever seen or heard from again.

He is presumed to have died in the Arctic in February 1914.

Personal life[edit]

In 1892, he married Mary Lyall.[citation needed]

In popular culture[edit]

Film[edit]

Works[edit]

  • Murray, J., 1905. The Tardigrada of the Scottish Lochs. Trans. R. Soc. Edinb., 41: 677 - 698
  • Murray, J., 1905. Microscopic life of St. Kilda. Ann. Scott. Nat. Hist., 54: 94 - 96
  • Murray, J., 1905. The Tardigrada of the Forth Valley. Ann. Scott. Nat. Hist., 55: 160 - 164
  • Murray, J., 1906. The Tardigrada of the Forth Valley. Part II. Ann. Scott. Nat. Hist., 60: 214 - 217
  • Murray, J., 1906. Scottish National Antarctic Expedition: Tardigrada of the South Orkneys. Trans. Roy. Soc. Edinb., 45: 323 - 339
  • Murray, J., 1906. Scottish Alpine Tardigrada. Ann. Scott. Nat. Hist., 57: 25 - 30
  • Murray, J., 1906. Scottish Alpine Tardigrada. Ann. Scott. Nat. Hist., 60: 214 - 217
  • Murray, J., 1907. Water-bears or Tardigrada. Quekett Micr. Club, 10: 55 - 70
  • Murray, J., 1907. Arctic Tardigrada, collected by Wm. S. Bruce. Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, 45: 669 - 681
  • Murray, J., 1907. Some Tardigrada of the Sikkim Himalaya. J. Roy. Microsc. Soc., 1907: 269 - 273
  • Murray, J., 1907. Encystment of Tardigrada. Trans. R. Soc. Edinb., 45: 837 - 854
  • Murray, J., 1907. Some South African Tardigrada. J. R. Micr. Soc. London, 5: 515 - 524
  • Murray, J., 1907. Some Tardigrada from the Sikkim Himalaya, Journ. R. Micr. Soc., pt. 3: 269 - 273, pl. 14
  • Murray, J., 1907. The encystment of Macrobiotus. The Zoologist, 11: 4 - 11
  • Murray, J., 1907. Scottish Tardigrada collected by the Lake Survey. Trans. Roy. Soc. Edinburgh, 45: 641 - 668
  • Murray, J., 1910. Tardigrada. British Antarctic Expedition 1907 - 1909. Reports on the Scientific Investigations. Vol. 1 Biology (Part V): 83 - 187 (plates 14 - 21)
  • Murray, J., 1910. Canadian Tardigrada. In Report for the Scientific Investigation of the British Antarctic Expedition 1907 - 1909. Volume I. London: 158 - 178
  • Murray, J., 1911. Water-bears or Tardigrada. J. Quekett Micr. Club., 11: 181 - 198
  • Murray, J., 1911. Arctiscoida. Proc. R. Ir. Acad., 31: 1 - 16
  • Murray, J., 1911. Scottish Tardigrada, a review of our present knowledge. Ann. Scott. Nat. Hist., 78: 88 - 95
  • Murray, J., 1911. Clare Island Survey: Arctiscoidea. Proc. Roy. Irish Acad., Dublin, 31: 1 - 16
  • Murray, J., 1913. African Tardigrada. J. R. Micr. Soc. London, pt. 2: 136 - 144
  • Murray, J., 1913. Notes on the Natural History of Bolivia and Peru. Scottish Oceanogr. Lab., Edinburgh: 1 - 45 (Tardigrada, pp. 28 – 30)

References[edit]

  1. ^ Riffenburgh, Beau - Shackleton's Forgotten Expedition: The Voyage of the Nimrod
  2. ^ 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.
  3. ^ Murray, F.R.S.E, Sir James. "Biology of the Scottish Lochs, by James Murray". Bathymetrical Survey of the Fresh-Water Lochs of Scotland, 1897-1909. 1. National Library of Scotland. pp. 275–334.
  4. ^ 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.
  5. ^ Murray, James; George Marston (1913). Antarctic days: sketches of the homely side of polar life, by two of Shackleton's men. A. Melrose.

Further reading[edit]

  • Niven, Jennifer (2001). The Ice Master. London: Pan Books. ISBN 0-330-39123-2.
  • "Captain Bartlett has no views". Washington Post. 6 July 1914.
  • Shackleton, Heart of the Antarctic.
  • Grann, David (2009). The Lost City of Z. Doubleday. pp. 110–124. ISBN 978-0-385-51353-1.