Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required

Beautiful Hand-Coloured Lantern Slides of Canadian Flowers (1920)

Share this:

William McCalla (November 8, 1872 – August 22, 1962), a botanist and teacher, created these hand-coloured lantern slides of Albertan flowers. Born in St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada, McCalla grew up in St. Catharines, studied at Cornell University, married Margaret A. Ratcliffe (they had eight children), ran Sunny Acres fruit farm near St. Catharines and in 1913 moved to Edmonton, Alberta.

 

Love-in-a-Mist: Flowers in 3 stages; youngest at right, to show change in position of pistils

Love-in-a-Mist: Flowers in 3 stages; youngest at right, to show change in position of pistils

 

In 1914, McCalla bought Glenbrook Farm near Bremner, east of Edmonton. In May 1920, he published an illustrated book, Wild Flowers of Western Canada. (These pictures all appear in that work.) In 1922, he became the librarian for the Edmonton Normal School, and soon was also teacher of the study of nature. In 1925, he moved to Calgary where he taught natural history at the Calgary Normal School until his retirement in 1938.

He made over 1,000 hand-coloured lantern slides of plants – flowers, the movement of floral parts, fertilization and seed production, fruits, flower gardening, ornamental planting, vegetable gardening, farm scenes, potatoes, the microscopic structure of plants – to help with his teaching; many of these are in the Botany Department at the University of Calgary and the Entomology Department at the University of Alberta. Following his retirement, William devoted more of his time to his botanical studies, traveling through western Canada and the United States. William Copeland McCalla was a recognized authority on the flora of Alberta. He was presented with a honourary degree, a doctor of laws, from the University of Alberta in 1956. In 1960, he presented his herbarium collection, numbering about 14,000 sheets, to the University of Alberta.

 

Hybrid cactus dahlia, El Granada

Hybrid cactus dahlia, El Granada

Decorative dahlia

Decorative dahlia

Amaryllis

Amaryllis

Hybrid cactus dahlia, Marmion

Hybrid cactus dahlia, Marmion

Trifolium macrocephalum

Trifolium macrocephalum

Amaryllis

Amaryllis

Arum

Arum

Townsendia Parryi

Townsendia Parryi

Calypso bulbosa Oakes

Calypso bulbosa Oakes

Shepherdia argentea - Buffalo Berry

Shepherdia argentea – Buffalo Berry

Oenothera triloba varecristata

Oenothera triloba varecristata

Calypso bulbosa Oakes

Calypso bulbosa Oakes

Mahogany Sumach: Rhus integritolia

Mahogany Sumach: Rhus integritolia

Early Single Tulip

Early Single Tulip

Vegetable Gardening

Vegetable Gardening

Hops: Humulus Lupulus

Hops: Humulus Lupulus

Early Double Tulip

Early Double Tulip

Lavatera, bud and fruits

Lavatera, bud and fruits

Gladiolus L’Eclantante

Gladiolus L’Eclantante

Fruit of Love-in-a-Mist

Fruit of Love-in-a-Mist

Vertical section of poppy capsule

Vertical section of poppy capsule

Eplilobium angustifolium discharging seeds

Eplilobium angustifolium discharging seeds

Lavatera showing form and development of stamens and pistils

Lavatera showing form and development of stamens and pistils

Fireweed blossoms in middle stage of bloom

Fireweed blossoms in middle stage of bloom

Epilobium angustifolium: Fireweed

Epilobium angustifolium: Fireweed

 

Aspen cut by beaver, Cypress Hills, Alberta

Aspen cut by beaver, Cypress Hills, Alberta

William McCalla standing in potato garden

William McCalla standing in potato garden

William McCalla conducting field work

William McCalla conducting field work

Via: Alberta Archives