Charles Walter de Vis

Charles Walter de Vis

Name: Charles Walter de Vis

Epoch: Late 19th Century (the \'Long Nineteenth Century\')

Grouping Field: Natural and Theoretical Sciences

Location Grouping: Individual\'s Work Location

Map Coordinates: 27°27\'06.0\"S 153°01\'45.8\"E

Years At Location: 1899-1912

One Historical Setting: Mr. Charles Walter de Vis, Director, Queensland Museum, 480 Gregory Terrace, Bowen Hills (1901)

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Charles de Vis was the curator of the Queensland Museum from 1882 and becoming the museum’s director in 1901. He was avid writer in the fields of palaeontology and systematic vertebrate zoology.

Impact On Brisbane Society

Charles de Vis established the colonial ‘western’ understanding of Queensland fauna. He paid an important role in the development of the Queensland Museum, supervising the moving of the museum from the Public Library, in William Street, to the Exhibition Building, in Bowen Park. More importantly, de Vis commenced the journal, The Annals of the Queensland Museum, which gave much attention to the ethnological and biological products of New Guinea, whence his friend, Sir William MacGregor, sent great quantities of material.

De Vis was Queensland’s chief connection with world of natural science in the ‘long nineteenth century’, with 130 papers published in the Zoologist, the Journal of Anatomy and Physiology, Memoirs of the Anthropological Society of London, the Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales, and the local journals and reports.


L. A. Gilbert, ‘de Vis, Charles Walter (1829–1915)’, Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University,, published first in hardcopy 1972, accessed online 18 December 2017.

Unnamed. Proceedings of the De Vis Symposium (Brisbane 1987), Queensland Museum, Brisbane, 1990.

Image Citation

Charles Walter de Vis. Photographer: Unknown