Record

Authorised form of nameMitchell; Sir; Peter Chalmers (1864 - 1945); zoologist
Dates1864 - 1945
NationalityBritish
Place of birthDunfermline, Fife, Scotland
Date of birth23 November 1864
Place of deathUniversity College Hospital, London, England
Date of death02/07/1945
Dates and placesCremated and his ashes were interred at Whipsnade, Dunstable, England (1945)
Occupationzoologist
Research fieldZoology
Anatomy
ActivityEducation:
Dunfermline high school; Aberdeen grammar school; King's College, University of Aberdeen; DSc; MA (Oxon)
Career:Lecturer at Charing Cross Hospital medical school; lecturer London Hospital (1894); worked in the prosectorium of the Zoological Society of London, where there was widespread dissatisfaction of the management of the Zoo under Philip Lutley Sclater (FRS 1861), the society’s secretary since 1859; elected as the secretary of the Zoological Society of London, upon Sclater’s retirement (1903) and immediately implemented the recommendations of the 1902 committee of inquiry; delivered the Royal Institution Christmas Lecture on 'The Childhood of Animals' (1911); oversaw the development of Mappin Terraces, a massive reinforced concrete structure for animals, including bears and wild goats, reducing confinement of animals (1914); involved with the department of military intelligence at the War Office, concentrating on propaganda for distribution on the German front lines, and developing the idea of dropping leaflets from hydrogen balloons (1914-1918); oversaw the opening of an aquarium under Mappin Terraces, the Zoological Society’s most ambitious project (1924) and a new reptile house (1927); succeeded in encouraging the Zoological Society to purchase the Whipsnade Farm in Bedfordshire and subsequently opened a new zoological park (1931); retired as secretary of the Zoological Society (1935); moved to Málaga, staying there during the first six months of the Spanish Civil War; served as honorary treasurer of the Joint Committee for Soviet Aid (1939-1945); died as a consequence of accidentally being knocked down outside the north gate of London Zoo (1945).
Honours:
CBE (1918); Kt (1929)
Memberships:
FLS; FZS; Savile Club; President of the Society for the Preservation of the Fauna of the Empire (1923-1927)
Membership categoryFellow
Date of election03/05/1906
Age at election42
ProposerWilliam Turner Thiselton-Dyer; Sydney John Hickson; John Bretland Farmer; Frank Evers Beddard; Joseph Fayrer; Harry Govier Seeley; William Abbott Herdman; Frederick William Pavy
John Scott Burdon-Sanderson; Edwin Ray Lankester; Edward Bagnall Poulton; Walter Frank Raphael Weldon; Adam Sedgwick; Hans Friedrich Gadow; Arthur Smith Woodward; James Cossar Ewart; Thomas George Bond Howes; Henry Woodward
RelationshipsParents: Revd Alexander Mitchell, and Marion Hay, daughter of the Revd Peter Chalmers.
Spouse: Lilian Bessie Pritchard (d. 1965), youngest daughter of Charles Pritchard (1808–1893) (1893)
Published worksRCN 55645
General contextRemembered mainly for hisgreat services as Secretary of the Zoological Society of London between 1903-1935.
Ensured animals were kept in well-ventilated accommocation adn had access to open air.
Known for founding Whipsnade Zoo.
Published a series of papers on the muscular system and internal anatomy of bords, including a monographic study of the intestines of birds, and a similar study on the intestines of mammals.
Royal Society Obituary or MemoirClick to view (may be contained within a meeting notice, presidential address or list of death notices)
SourcesSources:
Bulloch's Roll; DNB
Obituaries:
Obituary Notices of Fellows of the Royal Society 1945-1948 vol 5 pp 367-372, plate, by Edward Hindle
Virtual International Authority Filehttp://viaf.org/viaf/25383643
Royal Society codeNA1851
Archives associated with this Fellow
Reference numberTitleDate
IM/003121Mitchell, Sir Peter Chalmersnd
RR/17/292Referee's report by Peter Chalmers Mitchell, on a paper 'An investigation on the anatomical structure and relationships of the labyrinth in the reptile, the bird and the mammal' by Albert A Gray July 1908
NLB/28/797Copy letter from Joseph Larmor, to Dr Peter Chalmers Mitchell25 May 1904
MC/20/192Letter from [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, Zoological Society of London, 3 Hanover Square, to [Robert William Frederick] Harrison, The Royal Society, Burlington House8 July 1905
NLB/31/775Copy letter from Robert Frederick William Harrison, to Dr [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, [Fellow of the Royal Society]13 November 1905
NLB/32/747Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison, to [Messrs Harrison & Sons][19 May 1906]
NLB/36/485Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison, to Dr Peter Chalmers Mitchell, Fellow of the Royal Society4 November 1907
NLB/39/221Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison to Dr P [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, Fellow of the Royal Society12 December 1908
NLB/39/673Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison to Dr P [Peter] C [Chalmers] Mitchell, Fellow of the Royal Society22 February 1909
NLB/39/768Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison to Dr P C Mitchell, Fellow of the Royal Society9 March 1909
NLB/38/765Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison, to Dr Peter Chalmers Mitchell, Fellow of the Royal Society3 November 1908
NLB/42/357Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison to Dr H Forster Morley27 May 1910
NLB/42/768Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison to Dr P [Peter] C [Chalmers] Mitchell FRS 5 October 1910
NLB/45/399Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison to Dr P [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell FRS, Zoological Society, Regent's Park, NW29 February 1912
NLB/47/135Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison to Dr P [Peter] C [Chalmers] Mitchell FRS6 December 1912
NLB/47/567Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison to Dr P [Peter] C [Chalmers] Mitchell FRS22 February 1913
NLB/47/611Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison to Dr P [Peter] C [Chalmers] Mitchell FRS3 March 1913
NLB/51/266Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society to Dr Peter Chalmers Mitchell FRS27 January 1915
NLB/50/716Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison, to Dr [Peter Chalmers] Mitchell, Fellow of the Royal Society20 October 1914
NLB/51/435Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society to Dr Peter Chalmers Mitchell FRS19 March 1915
NLB/59/556Copy letter from Edwin Deller, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr. [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, FRS18 October 1920
NLB/52/582Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr. Peter Chalmers Mitchell, FRS22 January 1916
NLB/56/315Copy letter from [Robert William Frederick Harrison, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society]; to Dr. [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, FRS13 January 1919
NLB/59/767Copy letter from Edwin Deller, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr. [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, FRS10 November 1920
NLB/53/429Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr. [Peter Chalmers] Mitchell, FRS08 August 1916
NLB/64/17Copy letter from James Hopwood Jeans, Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr. [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, FRS; Zoological Society of London, Regent's Park, N.W.8.19 January 1923
NLB/65/226Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr [Peter Chalmers] Mitchell, FRS24 September 1923
NLB/61/367Copy letter from James Hopwood Jeans, Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr. [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, FRS23 June 1921
NLB/64/744Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr. [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, OBE FRS.13 June 1923
NLB/62/198Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to [Peter Chalmers Mitchell,] the Secretary of the Zoological Society for London; Regent's Park, N.W.23 December 1921
NLB/67/784Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr [Peter Chalmers] Mitchell, FRS7 March 1925
NLB/64/25Copy letter from James Hopwood Jeans, Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr. [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, FRS; Zoological Society of London, Regent's Park, N.W.8. 19 January 1923
NLB/62/782Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr. [Peter Chalmers] Mitchell, FRS5 May 1922
NLB/64/130Copy letter from David Prain, Treasurer and Vice President of the Royal Society; to Dr. [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, FRS5 February 1923
NLB/64/59Copy letter from David Prain, Treasurer of the Royal Society; to Dr. [Peter Chalmers] Mitchell, FRS25 January 1923
NLB/63/777Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr. [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, FRS14 December 1922
NLB/65/876Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to M. Kasimir de Proszynski; Replingham Road, S.W.1821 January 1924
NLB/65/916Copy letter from David Prain, Treasurer of the Royal Society; to Dr [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, FRS28 January 1924
RR/28/100Referee's report by Peter Chalmers Mitchell, on a paper 'Studies in amphibian colour change.—II' by H R Hewer[February 1923]
NLB/65/224Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr [Henry] Forster Morley24 September 1923
NLB/64/783Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Sir Sidney Harmer, FRS.18 June 1923
NLB/67/120Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr [Peter Chalmers] Mitchell, FRS29 October 1924
NLB/67/81Copy letter from David Prain, Treasurer of the Royal Society; to [Dr Henry] Forster Morley; 12 Heathview Garden, S.W.15.15 October 1924
NLB/67/533Copy letter from David Prain, Treasurer of the Royal Society; to Dr [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, CBE, FRS16 January 1925
NLB/67/463Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr [Peter Chalmers] Mitchell, FRS3 January 1925
NLB/67/505Copy letter from David Prain, Treasurer of the Royal Society; to Dr [Peter Chalmers] Mitchell, FRS12 January 1925
NLB/67/308Copy letter from [James Hopwood Jeans, Secretary of the Royal Society]; to Dr [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, FRS25 November 1924
NLB/67/339Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr [Peter Chalmers] Mitchell, CBE, FRS6 December 1924
NLB/66/448Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr. [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, FRS12 May 1924
NLB/67/771Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr [Peter Chalmers] Mitchell, FRS3 March 1925
NLB/67/559Copy letter from William Bate Hardy, Secretary of the Royal Society; to Professor [John] Stanley Gardiner, FRS22 January 1925
NLB/69/450Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr. [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, C.B.E, FRS19 April 1923
NLB/69/257Copy letter from James Hopwood Jeans, Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr. [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, FRS11 February 1926
NLB/69/646Copy letter from James Hopwood Jeans, Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr. [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, FRS8 July 1926
NLB/68/763Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr [Peter Chalmers] Mitchell, FRS30 October 1925
NLB/68/869Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, FRS16 November 1925
NLB/70/672Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr [Peter Chalmers] Mitchell, CBE, FRS28 June 1927
NLB/72/396Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Sir [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, CBE, FRS30 September 1929
NLB/70/951Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Dr [Peter Chalmers] Mitchell, FRS18 November 1927
NLB/72/403Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Sir [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, CBE, FRS3 October 1929
NLB/73/241Copy letter from Francis Alexander Towle, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to Sir Peter Chalmers Mitchell, FRS23 March 1931
NLB/29/811Copy letter from Joseph Larmor, to Dr Peter Chalmers Mitchell, [Fellow of the Royal Society]13 December 1904
NLB/39/712Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison to Dr P [Peter] C [Chalmers] Mitchell, Fellow of the Royal Society26 February 1909
RR/51/150Referee's report by Peter Chalmers Mitchell, on a paper 'Studies in reptilian colour response. I. - The bionomics and physiology of the pigmentary activity of the chameleon' by Alexander Zoond and Joyce Eyre [August 1933]
EC/1906/12Mitchell, Sir Peter Chalmers: certificate of election to the Royal Society
NLB/28/837Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison, to Dr Joseph Larmor, Fellow of the Royal Society3 June 1904
NLB/67New Letter Book volume 67, copy letters sent from Royal Society administration26 September 1924-23 April 1925
NLB/64New Letter Book volume 64, copy letters sent from Royal Society administration19 January 1923-11 July 1923
NLB/45/393Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison to Dr P [Peter] C [Chalmers] Mitchell FRS27 February 1912
MC/19/613Letter from [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, Secretary of the Zoological Society of London, 3 Hanover Square, to [Joseph] Larmor, St John's College, Cambridge31 October 1904
MC/19/615Letter from [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, Secretary of the Zoological Society of London, 3 Hanover Square, to the Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society, Burlington House23 November 1904
MC/19/614Letter from [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, Secretary of the Zoological Society of London, 3 Hanover Square, to [Joseph] Larmor14 November 1904
MC/20/190Letter from [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, Zoological Society, 3 Hanover Square, to [Robert William Frederick] Harrison, The Royal Society9 January 1905
MC/19/616Letter from [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, Secretary of the Zoological Society of London, 3 Hanover Square, to the Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society, Burlington House8 December 1904
MC/19/617Letter from the Secretaries of the Royal Society, to Dr [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell13 December 1904
MC/20Volume 20 of miscellaneous correspondence regarding business matters, sent to the Royal Society1905
NLB/29/895Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison, to Dr Peter Chalmers Mitchell, Fellow of the Royal Society9 January 1905
MC/20/191Letter from [Peter] Chalmers Mitchell, Zoological Society of London, 3 Hanover Square, to [Joseph] Larmor, Secretary of the Royal Society19 January 1905
NLB/31/207Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison, to Dr Peter Chalmers Mitchell, [Fellow of the Royal Society]10 July 1905
MC/19Volume 19 of miscellaneous correspondence regarding business matters, sent to the Royal Society1904
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