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Johnstone, James Todd

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Johnstone, James Todd

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  • Johnstone, J.T.
  • J.T. Johnstone
  • James Todd Johnstone

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Born Edinburgh 1883; died Edinburgh 1953.
James Johnstone studied botany as part of his M.A. degree at Edinburgh University and as a young man assisted his father in his antiquarian bookshop, gaining a sound knowledge of books, bookbinding and printing. In 1912 he was appointed, by Prof. Isaac Bayley Balfour, to become the first librarian at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh whose library had, by that time, grown to a considerable size. It was housed in various rooms and corridors and the system used to find each of the 4,000 volumes was to record the location on its cover and in a master catalogue. Johnstone held the library post for 35 years, but included time spent in the army during the First World War, and for many years was also Assistant Secretary to the Botanical Society of Edinburgh and edited its Transactions. He also edited and contributed to ‘Notes from the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh’ which Bayley Balfour had established in 1900 as the official scientific publication of the Garden. James Johnstone retired in 1946 and died in 1953.
Sources:HR Fletcher and WH Brown ‘The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh 1670-1970’; Deni Bown, ‘4 Gardens in One’


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