Difference between revisions of "DAWSON, William Leon"

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| Farallon Islands ||[[DAWSON, William Leon| W. L. Dawson]] || CAS||May 29, 1911||CAS-18078|| ''Seiurus aurocapilla aurocapilla'' ||Birds
 
| Farallon Islands ||[[DAWSON, William Leon| W. L. Dawson]] || CAS||May 29, 1911||CAS-18078|| ''Seiurus aurocapilla aurocapilla'' ||Birds
 
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| Farallon Islands ||[[DAWSON, William Leon| W. L. Dawson]] || CAS||May 29, 1911||CAS-18080|| ''Dendroica virens virens' ||Birds
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| Farallon Islands ||[[DAWSON, William Leon| W. L. Dawson]] || CAS||May 29, 1911||CAS-18080|| ''Dendroica virens virens'' ||Birds
 
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| Farallon Islands ||[[DAWSON, William Leon|W. L. Dawson]]|| CAS ||June 2, 1911||CAS-18006|| ''Molothrus ater artemisiae'' ||Birds
 
| Farallon Islands ||[[DAWSON, William Leon|W. L. Dawson]]|| CAS ||June 2, 1911||CAS-18006|| ''Molothrus ater artemisiae'' ||Birds

Revision as of 18:26, 14 June 2019

William Leon Dawson (1873-1928)
William Leon Dawson (1873-1928)
Bald Eagle egg set card,
Santa Cruz Island, March 6, 1922
SBMNH 20809


DAWSON, William Leon (1873-1928), Iowa-born ornithologist and author of Birds of Ohio (1903), Birds of Washington (1909) and Birds of California (1923).

Dawson met his wife, Frances Etta Ackerman, when they both attended Oberlin College in Seattle, Washington. They married on May 1, 1895. In 1910, Dawson, his wife and two young sons, William Oberlin (1899-1959) and Giles Edward (1903-1994), moved to Santa Barbara, where their daughter, Barbara Dorothy was born in 1913. For 35 years Dawson was an unusually active and highly competitive egg collector, and he built one of the finest collections of bird eggs in the world.

In 1916, he founded the Santa Barbara Museum of Comparative Oology. Under his leadership, the museum was recognized worldwide, eventually becoming the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History.

On March 6, 1922 Dawson collected a set of bald eagle eggs on Santa Cruz Island [SBMNH]. His disagreements with the museum board and subsequent resignation from the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History in 1923 opened opportunities for the museum’s expansion into other natural history fields besides eggs.

Dawson authored Birds of California in four volumes published in 1923. He drew upon photographic images taken by Donald Ryder Dickey in completing many of his illustrations.

Dawson died at age 55 in Columbus, Ohio on April 30, 1928. His ashes were spread at Crystal Lake in the Sierra Nevada. Copies of Dawson’s field notes can be found in the library holdings of the Western Foundation of Vertebrate Zoology in Camarillo, California.


Directory of Members, Cooper Ornithological Club, May 1914:

  • W. Leon Dawson. RD 3, Box 83., Santa Barbara, CA 1906.


W. L. Dawson collected on:



Palmer, T. S. Nomenclature of California Birds in Condor 30(5):267-268 September-October 1928:

DAWSON, William Leon. “Born in Leon, Iowa, February 20, 1873; died in Columbus, Ohio, April 30, 1928. Well known as the author of numerous publications on birds, and especially the “Birds of Ohio”, the “Birds of Washington”, and his great work the “Birds of California”. His contributions to ornithology have been commemorated by Grinnell who named the Sierra form of the Rosy Finch, Leucosticte t. dawsoni, in his honor.”


» Dawson, W. L. Another Fortnight on the Farallones in Condor 3:6 (171-182), November-December 1911

» Dawson, W. L. Supposed New Records for Santa Cruz Island in Condor 17(5):203-204 September-October 1915

Supposed New Records for Santa Cruz Island

» Dawson, W. L. The New Museum of Comparative Oology in Condor 18(2):68-74 March-April 1916

The New Museum of Comparative Oology

» Dawson, W. L. The Journal of the Museum of Comparative Oology; The case of the Santa Cruz Island jay, Aphelocoma insularis Hensh. Journal of the Museum of Comparative Oology l(3-4):26-29, 1920

» Dawson, W. L. The Season of 1919. The Santa Cruz Island Trip in J. Mus. Comp. Oology 2(3-4):45-54, 1922

» Dawson, W. L. The Birds of California. A complete, Scientific and Popular Account of the 580 Species and Subspecies of Birds Found in the State. Vol. 1. Booklovers’ Edition. South Moulton Company, Los Angeles, CA. 1923




Island Collections~
FARALLON ISLANDS
ISLAND COLLECTOR INSTITUTION DATE NUMBER SPECIMEN
Farallon Islands W. L. Dawson CAS May 29, 1911 CAS-18078 Seiurus aurocapilla aurocapilla Birds
Farallon Islands W. L. Dawson CAS May 29, 1911 CAS-18080 Dendroica virens virens Birds
Farallon Islands W. L. Dawson CAS June 2, 1911 CAS-18006 Molothrus ater artemisiae Birds
Farallon Islands W. L. Dawson WFVZ May 29, 1911 WFVZ-200813 Uria aalge Eggs



ANACAPA ISLAND
Anacapa Island || W. L. Dawson || SBMNH||March 8, 1922||SBMNH-20303|| Pelecanus occidentalis californicus ||Eggs
ISLAND COLLECTOR INSTITUTION DATE NUMBER SPECIMEN
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20301 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20302 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20304 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20305 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20306 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20307 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20308 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20309 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20310 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20311 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20312 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20313 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20314 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20315 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20316 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20317 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20318 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20319 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20320 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20321 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20322 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20323 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20324 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20325 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20326 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20327 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20328 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20329 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20330 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20331 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20332 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20333 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20334 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20335 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20336 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20337 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20338 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20339 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20340 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 8, 1922 SBMNH-20341 Pelecanus occidentalis californicus Eggs


SANTA CRUZ ISLAND
ISLAND COLLECTOR INSTITUTION DATE NUMBER SPECIMEN
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson DMNS April 5, 1915 DMNS-4269 Aphelocoma californica californica Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson WFVZ April 5, 1915 WFVZ-34621 Aphelocoma californica californica Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson WFVZ April 5, 1915 WFVZ-64423 Aphelocoma californica californica Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson MVZ April 6, 1915 MVZ-6306 Aphelocoma californica californica Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 6, 1915 SBMNH-24709 Aphelocoma insularis Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 7, 1915 SBMNH-24710 Aphelocoma insularis Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 7, 1915 SBMNH-24711 Aphelocoma insularis Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 9, 1915 SBMNH-28561 Carpodacus mexicanus Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 11, 1915 SBMNH-26136 Carpodacus mexicanus Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 12, 1915 SBMNH-28562 Carpodacus mexicanus Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 12, 1915 SBMNH-28563 Carpodacus mexicanus Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 12, 1915 SBMNH-28564 Carpodacus mexicanus Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 12, 1915 SBMNH-28565 Carpodacus mexicanus Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 12, 1915 SBMNH-28566 Carpodacus mexicanus Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 18, 1915 SBMNH-28567 Carpodacus mexicanus Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson PSM April 20, 1915 PSM-15475 Aphelocoma californica californica Birds
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 20, 1915 SBMNH-28568 Carpodacus mexicanus Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 20, 1915 SBMNH-28569 Carpodacus mexicanus Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 20, 1915 SBMNH-28570 Carpodacus mexicanus Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson PSM April 20, 1915 PSM-15307 Aphelocoma californica californica Birds
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson PSM April 20, 1915 PSM-15475 Carpodacus mexicanus Eggs
~ trip ~
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson OSUM March 19, 1916 OSUM-1626 Aphelocoma californica californica Birds
~ trip ~
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 2, 1917 SBMNH-24711 Aphelocoma insularis Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 2, 1917 SBMNH-24720 Aphelocoma insularis Eggs
~ trip ~
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 6, 1918 SBMNH-21105 Buteo jamaicensis Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 15, 1918 SBMNH-24722 Aphelocoma insularis Eggs
~ trip ~
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 8, 1919 SBMNH-26141 Lanius ludovicianus Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 15, 1919 SBMNH-24947 Corvus corax Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 17, 1919 SBMNH-21262 Falco sparverius Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 22, 1919 SBMNH-24949 Corvus corax Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 24, 1919 SBMNH-25857 Mimus polyglottos Eggs
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH April 24, 1919 SBMNH-25858 Mimus polyglottos Eggs
~ trip ~
Santa Cruz Island W. L. Dawson SBMNH March 6, 1922 SBMNH-20803 Haliaeetus leucocephalus Eggs




In the News~

January 27, 1911 [LAT/LB]: “W. Leon Dawson, who is a guest of Clarence B. Linton and leaves for a trip to San Clemente and San Nicolas islands, is at work on a book which will sell at $750 a copy. It is a work on California ornithology and will require five years to complete. The edition deluxe will consist of fifty copies of which twenty-five have been subscribed for.”


March 20, 1915 [SCICo]: “U. Revel, Supt. Santa Cruz Island, Santa Barbara, Calif., Dear Sir: The bearer, Mr. W. Leon Dawson, is engaged in the study of birds of California and desires to spend a few weeks on Santa Cruz Island. Mr. Dawson desires to camp out at various places and we, therefore, grant him permission to pursue his studies on the island, as we have assurances that he will do everything in his power to avoid, in any way, injuring our property. Kindly extend to Mr. Dawson every courtesy in your power, and you will greatly oblige Yours very truly, The Santa Cruz Island Company, AJC.”

William L. Dawson, Santa Barbara c. 1915

1915: “Through the courtesy of our distinguished fellow-member, Mr. Joseph Mailliard, and his friend, Mr. Arturo Caire, one of the present owners of Santa Cruz Island, I was permitted to spend nearly three weeks, viz. April 3rd to 22nd, with my son William, on this enchanted spot…” » Dawson, William Leon Supposed New Records for Santa Cruz Island in Condor 17:5 (203-204) September-October 1915.


August 23, 1916 [SBDN]: “The Museum of Comparative Oology, of which William Leon Dawson, local birdman is promoter, was open for the first time this summer this afternoon from two until six o’clock. It will be open the same hours Friday and Saturday. Mr. Dawson will be on hand to explain the exhibits which have been increased by about 2000 eggs during the last five months.”


August 30, 1916 [SBMP]: “Santa Cruz has jays found only there. Interesting fact revealed by oology study conducted by Mr. Dawson. One of the most curious facts brought to light by the field work carried out this past season by staff of the Museum of Comparative Oology is the effect of isolation upon the color of bird’s eggs. Isolation, that is, of the parent birds. Santa Cruz Island has a jay found upon that island only, and not even upon its neighbor, Santa Rosa. It is like the mainland type, or crestless blue jay… save that it is considerably larger and more deeply colored…”

William L. Dawson, Florida

September 3, 1915 [SBMP]: “Protection of wildlife is a problem. William Leon Dawson discusses suggestion made for Channel Islands… William Leon Dawson, the ‘Bird Man’ of Santa Barbara who may be considered as competent authority on this matter can be found, writes as follows: …’Before we invoke the aid of so powerful a person as Uncle Sam, we must bethink ourselves of what his administration involves. Experience has proven him to be a very jealous, and somewhat unreasonable, as well as very efficient guardian of wild things… Something ought to be done, of course. But, are we ready to invoke the aid of this very powerful, yet no less clumsy giant, federal control? Prepare then to forego the pleasure of ever setting foot upon any island brought thus under federal jurisdiction, save by express permission and in company with a government warden…”


September 28, 1915 [SBMP]: “The federal government has already taken notice of the movement for the creation of a game reserve on the Santa Barbara Islands. This has come about through the activities of David Starr Jordan and Charles E. Davis… With Washington authorities taking such keen interest in the proposal, it is not improbably that something will come out of it… The views of Mr. W. Leon Dawson, the ‘Birdman,’ have already been expressed in The Press; and as they are now recalled, it seems the subject, like many others, may have two sides.”


March 17, 1916 [SBMP]: “Oologists go on expedition. Slipping away noiselessly into the fog yesterday morning, the steam schooner Santa Cruz carried two veteran oologists, who constitute the first expedition sent out by the new Museum of Comparative Oology... A. G. Vrooman of Santa Cruz city, who leads the expedition, is well known among oologists as the discoverer of the egg of the rare black swift. After a sojourn on Santa Cruz Island, he will return and accompany W. Leon Dawson on an extended itinerary lasting until August 1...”