Royal Society of Queensland

Self portrait of Silvester Diggles, ca. 1847.(State Library of Queensland collection)

One of Queensland’s first scientists, Silvester Diggles was a founding member of the Queensland Philosophical Society.  His name appears at the beginning of their Members book, just above that of Walter Hill.

Member book, July 1859 to September 1877, 30771/1, 30771 Queensland Philosophical Society and Royal Society of Queensland minute books 1859-1930s, (State Library of Queensland collection)

The Philosophical Society was the predecessor of our state’s oldest scientific organisation, the Royal Society of Queensland.  Their minute books, dating from 1859 to 1949, are now available online. 

Minute book, September 1883 to June 1889, 29801/1, 29801, Royal Society of Queensland Minute Books, (State Library of Queensland collection)



The collection also includes their Library Borrowing Book, a peek into the reading habits of our early scientists which can be fascinating in and of itself.

Library borrowing book, 1870-1930, 30771/4, 30771 Queensland Philosophical Society and Royal Society of Queensland minute books 1859-1930s,(State Library of Queensland collection)

Browse through almost a century of science in Queensland:

Joan Bruce - Specialist Librarian, State Library of Queensland


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Great to see these minute books online. Proud to have had one of our family members play such an important role in the establishment of science in Queensland.