Archibald Geikie


1835 Born December 28th in Edinburgh. Educated at Edinburgh High School and University.
1855 Joined Geological Survey of Scotland.
1860 Accompanied Murchison to north-west and central Highlands.
Early survey work with H.H. Howell in Haddington. Then mapped area in Midlothian west of the coalfield, from Arthur’s Seat and the Pentlands to Bathgate Hills and north into Fife.
1861 Geologist.
Joint paper with Murchison to Geological Society “On the altered rocks of the Western Islands of Scotland and the North-west and Central Highlands”. Interpretation generally accepted till 1878 when controversy reopened. “Chronology of the Trap Rocks of Scotland” (T.R.S.E.)
1862 Important paper to Glasgow Geological Society “The Glacial Drift of Scotland” (1863).
1865 “Scenery of Scotland” (3 editions).
Mapped large areas of Old Red Sandstone in Midlothian, Lanark, Ayr, Fife, Perth and Kinross.
Made series of traverses in basin of Moray Firth, Caithness, Orkney, Shetland. Results embodied in “Old Red Sandstone of Europe” (T.R.S.E. 1878).
1867 Director for Scotland.
Important paper to Royal Society suggesting Tertiary age of basaltic plateaux of Ireland, West of Scotland and Iceland. Visited the Auvergne, Eifel district and South Italy.
1871 Elected to newly-founded Murchison Professorship of Geology and Mineralogy at Edinburgh; resigned 1881.
1879 Paper to Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinburgh “Carboniferous Volcanic Rocks of the Firth of Forth”.
Visited lava fields in Idaho on Pacific slope of US. (prior to lectures at Lowell Institute, Boston). Suggested similar origin for Tertiary volcanic plateaux of west. Europe.
1882 Director-General
1884 Geikie published new work and views (Peach and Horne) in “Nature” November 13th.
1888 Memoir to Royal Society of Edinburgh “History of volcanic action during Tertiary Period in British Isles” (results of 25 years of work).
1901 Retired.
1924 Died 10th November.
1861 “Life of Edward Forbes” (with Wilson).
1869 “Memoir of J.D. Forbes”.
“Life of Murchison”.
1880 “Text book of Geology”.
1887 “Geological sketches at home and abroad”.
1895 “Life of Ramsay”.
1897 “Ancient volcanoes of Great Britain”.
1904 “Scottish reminiscences” and “Primers on geology and physical geology. Class book of geology “Field Geology”.
1897 Lectures at John Hopkins University, Baltimore, afterwards published as “Founders of Geology”.
Later works “Landscape in History”, and “Love of Nature among the Romans”.
President Geological Society 1891,1892,1907; President British Association 1892; President of Royal Society 1908-1913; Trustee B.M.; Member of 1851 Exhibition Commissioners; Member of Council of British School of Rome; Governor of Harrow School 1892-1922; Chairman of Royal Commission on Trinity College, Dublin 1920.
F.R.S. 1865; Knighted 1891; K.C.B. 1907; O.M.1913; and Officier de la Legion d’Honneur; Associe Etranger de l’Institut de France; etc. Hon. Degrees from Edinburgh, Oxford, Cambridge, Dublin, Glasgow, Aberdeen, St. Andrews, Durham, Birmingham, Sheffield, Liverpool, Upsala, Leipzig, Prague, and Strasbourg.
Gold Medals from: Geological Society; Royal Geographical Society of Scotland; Royal Society of Edinburgh; Royal Society of London; Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, Philadelphia Academy of Natural Sciences.


1963 Memoir: East Berwick (1963).
1869 Memoir: Turnberry Castle (1869).
1900 Memoir: Fife & Kinross (1900).
1902 Memoir: Eest Fife (1902).
1866 Contibuted to Memoir: E. Lothian. (1866).
1861 Contibuted to Memoir: Edinburgh etc. (1861).
1869 Contibuted to Memoir: Peebles. (1869).
1869 Contibuted to Memoir: Ayr. (1869).
1869 Contibuted to Memoir: Girvan. (1869).
1872 Contibuted to Memoir: N. Ayrshire. (1872).
1873 Contibuted to Memoir: Central Lanarkshire. (1873).
1873 Contibuted to Memoir: Stranraer. (1873).
1873 Contibuted to Memoir: Whithorn, Burrow Head. (1873).
1871 Contibuted to Memoir: Sanquhar. (1871).
1877 Contibuted to Memoir: Dumfries. (1877).
1903 Contibuted to Memoir: N. Arran. (1903).
1879 Contibuted to Memoir: Airdrie etc. (1879).
1907 Contibuted to Memoir: N.W. Highlands. (1907). Editor.

Biographies and Obituaries

1924 Times November 12th 1924
1890 Geological Magazine (1890) p. 49
1924 Geological Magazine (1924) p.515
1926 Proceedings Royal Society B. XCIX (1926) p. i.