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Collection Guide
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Matkin (Joseph) Papers
SMC 0008  
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Collection Overview
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Letters of Joseph Matkin, ship's steward's assistant and member of the H.M.S. Challenger crew during the Challenger Expedition, a joint venture of the Royal Society of London and the British Admiralty (1872-1876). The collection also contains a small number of Matkin family photographs.
Joseph Matkin (1853-1927) was born in the small rural town of Uppingham, Rutland, England. His father owned a sucessful printing and stationary company in Oakham; he attended the Billesdon parish free school in Leicestershire. In 1867 Matkin entered the merchant marine, and in 1870, entered the Royal Navy. Matkin was transferred to the Challenger in 1872 and remained with the ship for the full duration of its three and a half year scientific expedition. He wrote extensively to family throughout the trip, and many of these letters, or copies of his letters, comprise this collection.
.8 Linear feet (2 archives boxes)
Publication rights are held by the creator of the collection.
Access to original letters requires the permission of the Director of Special Collections & Archives. Microfilm copies of 23 original Matkin letters are available in Box 2 of the collection. The John Thomas Swann letters are photocopies of Swann's original letterbook. All letters in the collection have been transcribed and published.