The University of North Carolina Herbarium has
databased approximately 40 specimens collected by
Hannibal Albert Davis and spouse, Tyreeca Davis. No
doubt more will be found as databasing continues.
The Davises usually signed their specimens
"Mr. and Mrs. H.A. Davis."
Davis (left), Tyreeca Davis (middle), and unidentified man
(right) ca. 1960
Photograph courtesy of
the West Virginia University Photographic Services
Tyreeca Elizabeth Stemple was born
in West Virginia to David William Stemple (1870-1950)
and Bertie Stemple.
In 1910 the family, including Tyreeca and
younger sibling, Fritz, were living in Eckert, Delta County, Colorado. The 1910 census lists David as a “general
farmer.”1 In 1920 the
family was living in Claquaton, Lewis County,
Washington, where D.W. was working as a mill wright.2 By 1925 the
family was living in Morgantown, West Virginia and David was working as a
Tyreeca Davis earned an A. B. (1926) and an M.A. (1928; Thesis
title "Periodic quadratic transformations, and quartic
curves left invariant by them") in mathematics from Cornell University.
Hannibal Davis and Tyreeca
Stemple were married in 1925 in Monongalia, West
Virginia, and Hannibal was a member of the mathematics faculty at West
Virginia University in Morgantown.
Davis' botanical interests included Rubus and Viola. Rubus leggii was named by
H. A. and Tyreeca Davis in William Clarence Legg's
honor (Davis, H.A. and Tyreeca Davis. 1953. The
genus Rubus in West Virginia. CASTANEA
18(1): 1-31). "This species is dedicated to the memory of the late
William C. Legg, naturalist of Mount Lookout, Nicholas County, West Virginia,
whom we accompanied on several pleasant and profitable field trips" (p.
The Harvard Herbaria Database lists CM
(Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA) as a
major repository for Davis' herbarium specimens, though it seems likely that
WVA (West Virginia University in Morgantown, WV, USA) would have many as
A paper in CASTANEA in 1982 lists the address
for corresponding with H.A. and Tyreeca Davis as
"Rt. 2, Box 140, Freeport, Florida," where they presumably retired
after H. A. retired from the Mathematics faculty at West Virginia University
in Morgantown, WV.
Tyreeca Davis died in Freeport, Walton County, Florida in
Dr. Wayne Davis and Dr. Elizabeth Davis Swiger established the H.A. and Tyreeca
Davis Herbarium Endowment at WVA in honor and memory of their parents.
Anonymous (1988) Davis Herbarium Goes to
Carnegie Museum. CASTANEA 53: 83.
The private herbarium of Hannibal A. and Tyrecca E. Davis has been given to the Carnegie Museum in
Pittsburgh. This consists of a 10,000 sheet general collection with emphasis
on West Virginia, and 10,000 sheets of Rubus,
mostly from eastern North America. The Rubus
material is the basis for the Davis' (with A. M. Fuller) revision of the
North American Eubati (Castanea
1967, 32: 20-37; 1968, 33:50-76; 1969, 34: 157-179; 1969, 34: 235-266; 1970,
35: 176-194; 1982, 47: 216-219). Although it contains no types, this is the
most valuable collection extant to use in identifying an unknown specimen.
For each species the Davises had a "working
type", usually from the type locality or nearby, which they had
carefully compared to the type specimen. For many species names the type is
too poor to be recognizable: too immature; floricanes
only; primocanes only; parcifronds
or novirames; a mixture of more than one species,
or other such problems. With considerable effort, often observing at
different stages of development and sometimes growing the plants, they were
able to prepare good material that they were confident represented the
The Davises visited
most of the type localities for North American Rubus names, and their
collection contains representatives for nearly all names.
All the Davises'
working materials regarding Rubus (notes
made when examining types, manuscripts, correspondence, annotated reprints,
etc.) have also been deposited at the Herbarium of the Carnegie Museum.
Partial list of publications:
Davis, H.A. and Tyreeca
Davis (1953) The genus Rubus in West
Virginia. CASTANEA 18(1): 1-31.
Davis, H.A., Albert M. Fuller, and Tyreeca Davis (1982) Some comments on Rubus.
CASTANEA 47(2): 216-219.
Davis, Hannibal A. (1990)
in “Rubus.” Castanea
Ancestry .com 1910 United
States Federal Census. Provo, UT,
USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc.,
2006. Year: 1910; Census Place: Eckert, Delta, Colorado; Roll: T624_114; Page: 10A; Enumeration District: 0030; Image: 180; FHL microfilm: 1374127.
Year: 1920; Census. Place:
Claquaton, Lewis, Washington; Roll:
T625_1933; Page: 3A; Enumeration
District: 131; Image: 369.
Source: Ancestry.com. 1920 United States Federal Census. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc., 2010.
Virginia, City Directory 1925.
U.S. City Directories, 1821-1989 (Beta). Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc., 2011.