Thomas Bellerby Wilson

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Thomas Bellerby Wilson (1807–1865)

Thomas Bellerby Wilson (1807, Philadelphia – 1865) was an American naturalist. Wilson was educated first at a Quaker school in Philadelphia, then in Darlington, England, and then at the University of Paris, France and Trinity College in Ireland. In 1828 he entered the University of Pennsylvania training as a physician. He lived in Philadelphia until 1833, then moved to New London Pennsylvania. In 1841 he moved to Newark, Delaware. He joined the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia and was their principal benefactor and donor. His (26,000 specimens bird collections bird collection was housed in the academy building, which was enlarged for the purpose of its display.

Wilson made many field trips in the US to collect birds, reptiles, fish and insects, minerals, fossils and shells . He also purchased entire collections of specimens and libraries by mail and during his five trips to Europe. One such collection was that of François Victor Masséna (12,500 bird specimens).

Wilson was one of the founders of the American Entomological Society


  • Anonymous (1882). "Thomas Bellerby Wilson, M.D.". Historical and Biographical Encyclopedia of Delaware. Wilmington: Aldine Publishing and Engraving Co.
  • W. H. Day (1984). "T. B. Wilson, M.D., a founder and benefactor of the American Entomological Society, and his family: our first Newark, Delaware-Philadelphia connection". Entomological News. 95 (4): 137–147.