The Tenure of Albert W. C. T. Herre


Albert Christian Theodore Herre (1869-1962) was an ichthyologist and a botanist who pursued a remarkable career (Fig. 12).  He earned three academic degrees (B.A. 1904, M.A. 1905, and Ph.D. 1909) from Stanford University.  Herre was broadly educated in zoology, ichthyology, and botany.  His doctorate was in botany, with a specialty in the taxonomy of lichens.  Herre also worked widely on fishes and he published prolifically in both botany and in ichthyology (Wiggins, 1962).46 

Herre had a varied employment background.  He was a newspaper reporter in Illinois (ca 1888).  He taught high school in Illinois (1890-1900) and California (1904-1912), and he was a professor at the University of Nevada (1909-1910) and the Western Washington State College of Education (1915-1920).  Herre spent considerable time working in fisheries in the western Pacific and Southeast Asia, partaking of no less than nine expeditions from 1928-1941.  He was Chief of the Department of Fisheries, Philippine Islands, from 1920-1928 and from 1928-1946 he was the Curator of the Museum of Zoology at Stanford University (Cattell, 1955; Herre, 1997).

On completion in 1948 of his contract for fisheries work in the Philippines, Herre joined the UW in October of that year at the age of 80 (Wiggins, 1962; Stickney, 1989; Herre, 1997).  He worked on his accumulation of Philippine fishes while overseeing the Fish Collection.47  Herre did not have an academic appointment at the UW, likely because of his age, so he did not teach or supervise graduate students.  He was, however, a factor in teaching the taxonomy of fishes and in interacting with students.48

In 1950, the School of Fisheries moved from the old wooden buildings north of the recently established medical school into the new Fisheries Center (Fig. 13) (Stickney, 1989).  The Fish Collection had new and larger quarters and Herre was involved in setting up the Collection (Fig 14).49  During Herre’s nine years as acting Curator of Fishes, the Collection grew by an estimated 7,800 lots (Table 1).  This included his collection of fishes from the Philippine Islands made during 1948.  The latter, according to Herre, consisted of about 823 lots containing several thousand specimens representing between 400-500 species on which he published numerous papers (e.g., Herre, 1950, 1951, 1958).50

Albert Herre retired in 1957 due to failing health at age 86.  There was no replacement for Herre until 1963 and the supervision of the Fish Collection again fell to Arthur Welander.



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