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Second Lt Alexander Moncrieff Finlayson

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Fellowship details: No.4767, elected 1 December 1909.

Died: 23 July 1917, France, aged 33 years.


Alexander Moncrieff Finlayson, son of Mr Alex M and Mrs I S Finlayson, of Maori Hill Dunedin, New Zealand, was an Entrance and Senior Scholar at the University of Otago, gaining his MSc in 1907 with double first class honours. He came to London in 1908 with an 1851 Exhibition Scholarship, spending two years in research work at the Royal College of Science gaining a DSc. In 1910 he took up an appointment with Indo-Burmah Petroleum Co Ltd as a petroleum geologist.

Before coming to London he had carried out researches on the goldfields, the scheelite deposits and the nephrite of his native New Zealand, besides contributing to the geology of the Sub-Antarctic Islands. While in England he made a comprehensive study of the British ore-deposits and endeavoured to classify them with reference to their geological age. His results were embodied in two papers read before the Society in 1910. He also visited Spain, and made important contributions to the knowledge of the pyritic deposits of Huelva.

Following the outbreak of war, Finlayson returned to England and received his commission as a lieutenant in the South Lancashire Regiment in 1915, In August 1916 he joined the British Expeditionary Force in France where he was wounded in October that year. He returned to active service in May 1917, but was again wounded, dying from in his injures on 23 July 1917.  
Cemetery: Locre Hospice Cemetery, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium.

GSL Awards: Daniel Pidgeon Fund, 7 April 1909, given to Mr Alexander Moncrieff Finlayson, MSc, who proposed to undertake researches on the Genesis of the Sulphide Ores.

  • Finlayson, A M, “Some Observations on the Schists of Central Otago”, ‘Transactions of the New Zealand Institute’, vol XL (1908), pp72-79. 
  • Finlayson, A M, “Scheelite of Otago”, ‘Transactions of the New Zealand Institute’, vol XL (1908), pp110-122. 
  • Finlayson, A M, “The Nephrite and Magnesian Rocks of the South Island of New Zealand”, ‘Abstracts of the Proceedings of the Geological Society (1908-1909), pp97-98; ‘Quarterly Journal of the Geological Society’, vol 65 (1909), pp351-380. 
  • Finlayson, A M, “Problems in the Geology of the Hauraki Goldfields, New Zealand”, ‘Economic Geology’, vol 4 (1909), 632-645.
  • Finlayson, A M, “The Geology of the Quartz Veins of the Otago Goldfields”, ‘Transactions of the New Zealand Institute’, vol XLI (1909), pp64-98. 
  • Speight, R & A M Finlayson, “Subantarctic islands of New Zealand”, ‘Art XXX Physiography & Geology of Auckland, Bounty and Antipodes Islands’, (1909), pp705-744.
  • Finlayson, A M, “Problems of Ore-Deposition in the Lead and Zinc Veins of Great Britain”, ‘Quarterly Journal of the Geological Society’, vol 66 (1910) , pp299-328.
  • Finlayson, A M, “The Metallogeny of the British Isles”, ‘Quarterly Journal of the Geological Society’, vol 66 (1910), pp281-298. 
  • Finlayson, A M, “Ore-bearing Pegmatites of Carrock Fell, and the Genetic Significance of Tungsten-Ores”, ‘Geological Magazine’, Decade V, vol VII (1910), pp19-28.
  • Finlayson, A M, “The Pyritic Deposits of Huelva (Spain)”, ‘Economic Geology’, vol 5 (1910), pp357-370, 403-437; ‘Geological Magazine’, Decade V, vol VII (1910), pp220-229.
  • Finlayson, A M, “The Paragenesis of British Ores”, ‘Economic Geology’, vol 5 (1910), pp719-728. 
  • Finlayson, A M, “The Copper Mines of Southern Spain and Portugal”, ‘Mining Journal’, vol LXXXIX (1910), pp546-749.
  • Finlayson, A M, “Secondary Enrichment in the Copper Deposits of Huelva (Spain”, ‘Transactions of the Institution of Mining & Metallurgy’, vol XX (1911), pp61-72.
  • Obituary, ‘Quarterly Journal of the Geological Society’, vol 74 (1918), Proceedings p lxii.

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