THOMAS GIBSON SLOANE.
(BY H. J. CARTER.)
Sheep breeder, naturalist, and entomologist. T. G. Sloane, of Moorilla Station, Young, was a notable Australian who died at the Bun- nerong Hospital, Young, on Thursday. October
One of the five sons ot Alexander Sloane, of Mulwala, Murray River, a well-known merino expert, he spent his early days partly at Scots College, Melbourne, and partly with a tutor at Mulwala. But natural history was his pas- sion, and though he came to Sydney to learn business methods, he found the association with Sir W. Macleay and his brother natural- ists more interesting than stock broking, and when he took on the management of Moorilla for A. Sloane and Sons (1888) he had already begun to communicate papers to the Linnean Society of New South Wales, greatly aided by his close friend, the late J. J. Fletcher.
An enthusiastic Darwinian (I have never met anyone who knew "The Origin" so thor- oughly) he studied the anatomy, phylogeny, classification, and distribution of two groups of beetles, the Cicendelldae (Tiger beetles), and the Carabidae. soon becoming the Aus- tralian expert, later a world authority on the latter group. In the last num- ber of the "Transactions of the Ento- mological Society of London." I find a writer on this subject, stating, "Sloane's Table of Tribes has been adopted as being the most satisfactory classification in existence." He had a wide correspondence with British and Continental authors. To all collectors Sloane was a mine of information, he and the late A M. Lea, dividing the honours in affording help by naming specimens and giving advice. Few entomologists went so deeply into his sub- ject as he, for his philosophic mind demanded more than mere descriptions of new species, and his researches went into heredity and dis- tribution, involving wide reading. He studied Australian exploration closely and possessed a good library on the subject. His paper. "On the Faunal Subdivisions of Australia" is a classic, frequently quoted by others.
We made many interesting trips together over this continent, and were, I think, the first entomologists to explore the Dorrigo and Barrington Tops. A more lovable companion could not be conceived. Unselfish and cheer- ful, with a flood of anecdote, he was a good mixer with bush folk whom he thoroughly understood. A keen merino sheep breeder, he had a stud of his own registered in the flock- book. During early days at Moorilla he won numerous prizes for sheep at various shows. Generous to others, sparing in his own wants, a stoic by nature and will, his later years were clouded by economic burdens. With a strong, vigorous physique he suffered little illness till recently, when cardiac asthma assailed him.
A widow, two sons, and four daughters mourn his loss, as do his many friends.