Thomas Mayo Brewer

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Thomas Mayo Brewer

Thomas Mayo Brewer (November 21, 1814 – January 24, 1880) was an American naturalist.

Mayo is best known as the joint author, with Baird and Ridgway, of A History of North American Birds (3 volumes, 1874), which was the first attempt since John James Audubon's (thirty years prior) to complete the study of American ornithology.

Brewer was born in Boston, the younger brother of noted Boston merchant Gardner Brewer. He graduated from Harvard College in 1835 and from Harvard Medical School three years later. He abandoned his career as a doctor after a few years to concentrate on writing and politics, later becoming editor of the Boston Atlas. He then joined the publishing firm of Hickling, Swan & Brown, which became Hickling, Swan & Brewer when he became a partner in 1857; this firm subsequently became Swan, Brewer & Tileston.[1][2]

Brewer spent his spare time contributing to a number of ornithological publications, including John James Audubon's Ornithological Biography. Brewer was a companion to Audubon, who gave Brewer's name to a duck, a blackbird, and a small mammal (Brewer's shrew mole) found on Martha's vineyard.[3]

The Brewer family has been prominent in Massachusetts for 200 years, including James Brewer (1742–1806), an early American patriot leader and businessman, Gen. Wilmon Blackmar, a Civil War medal of honor winner, and Wilmon Brewer, a poet, biographer, and philanthropist.[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Brewer, Wilmon, Looking Backwards, Marshall Jones Company, Francestown, NH, 1985
  2. ^ The Ohio Journal of Education, February 1857, p. 62.
  3. ^ Milne, John, "Once-notable family has its history sold to the highest bidder," Boston Globe, Metro section, p. 16, May 29, 1995, Boston, MA.
  4. ^ Milne, John, "Once-notable family has its history sold to the highest bidder," Boston Globe, Metro section, p. 16, May 29, 1995, Boston, MA.