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Slater, Matthew Bartendale (1829 - 1918)


Biographical notes

Matthew Bartendale [or Bartindale, it appears he used both] Slater is best known as a Bryologist, though he seems to have been a thorough botanist as well, often leading botanical excursions for the Malton Field Naturalist and Scientific Society, of which he was a founder member in 1880. As a nurseryman and seedsman he was often selected to judge at horticultural and floral shows all around North Yorkshire. His major contribution was his Account of the Mosses and Hepatics of the North Riding of Yorkshire in J. G. Baker's North Yorkshire. Another significant contribution was as the executor of Richard Spruce's Will. As the sole executor, Slater made available to Alfred Russell Wallace all of Spruce's notes and journals from his 15 years in the Amazon allowing Wallace to publish them.

His herbarium was housed with the Malton Field Naturalists' Society until it's demise. In 1969 it was donated to Woodend Museum in Scarborough by Laverack and Sons, chemists, Malton, and is now held by Scarborough Museums Trust.

Portrait (left) from the Naturalist 560 Sept 1903 plate XI facing page 368.

1829 : Birth Birth of Matthew Bartendale Slater, son of John Slater and Elizabeth, née Bartindale, at Malton, North Riding of Yorkshire.
1858 September 9 : Marriage 1York Herald : 1858 September 11
"MARRIAGES:- Slater- Waller.- On the 9th inst., at- St. Michael's Church, Malton, by the Rev. G. A. Firth, Mr. Matthew B. Slater, Malton, to Jemima, the youngest daughter of Mr. Richard Waller, farmer, Welburn. "
1889 : FLS Elected a Fellow of the Linnean Society.
1918 February 22 : Death 1Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer : 1918 February 23 -
 "Deaths:- Mr. Matthew Slater,of Newbiggin, Malton, died yesterday at the age of 88 years. He was in business as a florist at Malton, and in earlier days was identified with public life in the town, having been for 20 years Chairman of the Malton District Council. A Fellow of the Geological Society, he took keen interest the Malton Naturalist Society, of which he was for many years secretary, while he was an authority on mosses and hepatica in the Malton district."

1 Transcription reproduced with kind permission of The British Newspaper Archive

Managed by James R. Middleton; last updated 2016 February 18


1841 York-road, Malton - census
1851 York-road, Malton - census
1861 St Nicholas-street, Norton - census
1871 Yorkersgate, New Malton - census
1881 Yorkersgate, New Malton - census
1891 West Grove Villas, Malton - census
1901 Newbiggin, Malton - census
1911 84 Newbiggin, Malton - census
1918 84 Newbiggin, Malton



Additional links

Annotated Slater family tree. link
Obituary - Journal of Botany 1918 by J G Baker. (Biodiversity Heritage Library) link
Obituary by Tom Sheppard from the Naturalist March 1918. link
Details of the herbarium on the FENSCORE database. link
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