Obituary: Robert Miller Christy

Published on 01 June 1928 in Obituaries

THE unexpected death of Miller Christy, as he signed himself and was generally known, has deprived Essex of one of its most prominent figures, for the greater part of his varied writings had some relation to the county of his birth. Christy came from an old-established Essex Quaker family, settled near Chelmsford, where he was born in May, 1861. He died as the result of an operation on January 25th, 1928. He was never married. His interest in natural history and kindred subjects was of life-long duration, for during his school days at Bootham School, York, he is said to have collected ornithological and other specimens and to have written on them, and as a young man he spent about a year in Manitoba, increasing his knowledge of his favourite subjects. Although Christy could not be described as a specializing ornithologist, yet he turned to this subject with that natural aptitude which enabled him to deal with a diversity of subjects. At the age of nineteen we find him writing in the pages of the Transactions of the Essex Field Club, ” On the Occurrence of the Great Bustard and of the Rough-legged Buzzard, near Chelmsford, during the winter of 1879,” with an intimacy which suggests a strong grasp of the subject. In 1884 he contributed to the Norfolk’and Norwich Naturalists’ Society’s Transactions an article of some importance : ” Do the Blackbird and Thrush ever Interbreed ? ” He continued to write papers and notes relating to the

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