British Association Meeting of 1848

Britain's Scientists come to Swansea, 1848

The meeting of the British Association for the Advancement of Science in Swansea in 1848 was remarkable in that so many first rank men of science braved visiting so little known an area as South Wales. That they did owed much to the high reputation of some of the leading men of the Royal Institution here, especially William Grove the physicist. The centre for what we might call a conference was the building which is now Swansea Museum, then the R.I.S.W., and only seven years old.

The article which follows is an excellent description of how it all went. It is the work of Margaret Walker, a fine historian who usually concentrated on earlier periods. It was published in Gower, Vol. 22, 1971. Our thanks to her and to the Gower Society for their ready permission to include it here.

 Click photographs for more informationBritish scientists.jpg


Article on 'The British Association in Swansea in 1848' by Margaret Walker.

Article includes first hand accounts of the 18th meeting of the British Association for the Advancement of Science which took place in Swansea, Wales.

This article originates from 22nd edition of the Gower Journal (1971), with thanks to the author and to the Gower Society



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Three sketches by John Weir Padley (1812-1886)


These sketches almost certainly portray the groups of scientists in Swansea. Padley's sketches have a humorous tone and it would have likely been possible to identify the individuals at the time. Click on the images for more information.