How a baby got her name!
Some readers might remember a previous post written about the botanist Thomas Rogers and his sudden death in the Lake District in 1901 many miles away from his home near Oldham.
Rogers, a pawnbroker, was an ardent explorer and naturalist set off for the Scottish Highlands in 1875 in search of plants with a small group of similar minded local men. John Whitehead a mill worker, James Nield, a printer and Levi Tetlow, a tea dealer. They had many adventures over a two week stay and Thomas compiled a report to record the places they visited and the species they encountered. This was read before the Manchester Botanist’s Association and later formally published.There was also evidence in the many thousands of well documented specimens that they brought back from their travels. These were flowering plants including many Scottish alpines and also mosses. Thomas was particularly interested in these tiny plants. These important historic specimens are all the natural history collections at Gallery Oldham.
Included in the flowering plants collected are 10 specimens of Linnaea boralis – Twinflower. A tiny, beautiful, alpine plant.
Thomas had a daughter in 1866 almost 10 years before his trip, who was named Linnea, after this tiny flower. This unusual name became a family name which has been passed down through the generations.
Since writing the first blog three of Thomas’s family have got in touch and have provided photographs and more information. One is Jennie a distant cousin and a brother and sister, Thomas’s great grandson David and Thomas’s great grand-daughter Linnea.
The flower was originally named after the great Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus and is the national flower of Sweden.