Thomas Stewart Traill
Traill was born at Kirkwall in Orkney, the son of the Rev Thomas Traill (died 1782), the minister in Kirkwall, and studied at Edinburgh University (MD 1802). He practiced medicine for 30 years in Liverpool, and was a founder of the Royal Institution of Liverpool, the Liverpool Mechanics' Institution and the Literary and Philosophical Society of Liverpool. He became acquainted with the Arctic explorer William Scoresby, contributing a list of animals observed in eastern Greenland to Scoresby's Journal of a Voyage to the Northern Whale Fishery (1823). Scoresby named Traill Island in Greenland for him.
When John James Audubon arrived in Liverpool in July 1826 Traill helped him to find a publisher for his The Birds of America. Audubon named the Traill's flycatcher after him, which at one time referred to a species which included both the willow flycatcher (Empidonax traillii) and the alder flycatcher (Empidonax alnorum).
Edinburgh University and the Encyclopædia Britannica
Traill returned to Edinburgh University in 1832 as a professor of medical jurisprudence and served in this role until death, also serving as President of the Royal College of Physicians in Edinburgh 1852 to 1854. He edited the 8th edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica (1852–61), which concluded a year before his death.
He died in Edinburgh on 30 July 1862, and was interred at St Cuthbert's cemetery. The grave contains members of both the Omond family and Traill family and stands against an outer eastern wall of the southern section.
- Waterston, Charles D; Macmillan Shearer, A (July 2006). Former Fellows of the Royal Society of Edinburgh 1783-2002: Biographical Index (PDF) II. Edinburgh: The Royal Society of Edinburgh. ISBN 978-0-902198-84-5. Retrieved 22 March 2011.
- Audubon to Xánthus, Barbara and Richard Mearns ISBN 0-12-487423-1