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William 'Strata' Smith (1769-1839), the Father of English Geology

In August 1815, William Smith (1769-1839) issued what is acknowledged as the first geological map of a country ever produced, ‘A Delineation of the Strata of England and Wales, with part of Scotland; exhibiting the collieries and mines, the marshes and fen lands originally overflowed by the sea, and the varieties of soil according to the variations in the substrata, illustrated by the most descriptive names'. Bringing together the Society's rare and unique William Smith items, this exhibition is a celebration of his achievements in the field of geology which laid the basis of the science we know today – and led to him rightfully being known as ‘The Father of English Geology’.

WW1 Centenary logo hi quality

World War One: Roll of Honour

To mark the centenary of the beginning of World War One, this exhibition focuses on the Society's Fellows who lost their lives serving in the armed forces.

Elementary Geology in the 1830s

The latest 'product' to be added to the Library's popular map sale is a series of three illustrated plates entitled 'Geologische Elementarkarte' (1838), taken from the Archives. The lithographs of fossils, views and other images collected together on the set of sheets were designed to encompass all that was known of science at the time of publication - essentially a lesson in elementary geology. This exhibition looks at each sheet in more detail, and explains the stories behind the historical images which may be lost on a modern audience.

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Sir Lewis Leigh Fermor’s Diary: Life in Colonial India

The Society’s Archives contain material relating to many former Fellows, including Sir Lewis Leigh Fermor, Director of the Geological Survey of India from 1932-1935, after whom the Fermor Fund and Fermor Meeting are named. This exhibition explores one of Fermor’s diaries, covering his first two field work seasons in India (1902-1903 and 1903-1904) – a document that gives an intriguing insight into the life of both an early twentieth century geologist, and an English civil servant in British India.

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The Society's Portrait and Bust Collection

The Geological Society holds a large number of images of its Fellows, collected throughout the 200 years’ of its existence. This exhibition focuses on the larger, more distinguished paintings and busts which can be seen displayed around the rooms and staircase of the Society’s apartments in Burlington House, giving an introduction to the individuals depicted and their connections with the Society.


Louis Agassiz's Fossil Fish

Recently, the Library & Archives of the Geological Society of London has been fundraising to conserve and digitise one of its most important collections – the fossil fish portfolio of the Swiss naturalist Louis Agassiz (1807–1873). This exhibition is an opportunity to see more of the images which can be found in the collection, including some rather unusual items.

Mary Buckland silhouette

Women and Geology in the 19th century

Women were excluded from membership of the Geological Society of London until the 20th century.  Despite this, women still participated in the formative years of geology, when it was developing as the science we know now.  Using a selection of sources from the Library and Archive collections, this exhibition highlights just some of the contributions of women to this most masculine of sciences in the first half of the 19th century.