Liriodendron tulipifera flower

The University of North Carolina
A Department of the North Carolina Botanical Garden



Collectors of the UNC Herbarium
Information compiled by Carol Ann McCormick, Curator NCU

Lewis Henry Lighthipe
(24 January 1843 -- 14 December 1927)

The UNC Herbarium seeks more information (particularly a photographic portrait) of Rev. Lighthipe.
Please email Carol Ann McCormick

The University of North Carolina Herbarium (NCU) has catalogued approximately 50 specimens collected by Lewis Henry Lighthipe.  Of those, about 2/3 are from Florida and about 1/3 from New Jersey (particularly the Pine Barrens).

Other herbaria which curate specimens collected by Lighthipe include Brigham Young University (BRY), Carnegie Museum (CM), Field Museum (F), University of Minnesota (MIN), Louisiana State University (LSU), Miami University (MU), Missouri Botanical Garden (MO), Montana State University, Billings (MSUB), New York Botanical Garden (NY), North Carolina State University (NCSC), Rutgers University (CHRB), South Dakota State University (SDSU), Eastern Illinois University (EIU), University of Arizona (ARIZ), University of Illinois (ILL), University of Michigan (MICH), and University of Wisconsin (WIS).

Specimen collected by Lewis Henry Lighthipe, curated at NCU
Calopogon pallidus, collected in 1897 from San Pablo, Duval County, Florida, USA

It seems that Rev. Lighthipe was interested many aspects of natural history.  Fossils collected by Lighthipe (specifically Erquelinnesia molaria Hay – a turtle) in Birmingham, Burlington County, New Jersey are in the collections of the Philadelphia Academy of Sciences (1).

John K. Small named Phlox lighthipei in honor of Rev. Lighthipe.


The following text is from:  Barnhart, John Hendley (1928) Lewis Henry Lighthipe. Torreya 28:13-14.

Lewis Henry Lighthipe was born at Orange, New Jersey, 24 January 1843. He graduated from Columbia University in 1863, and from the General Theological Seminary, New York City, in 1866, receiving his master's degree from Columbia in the same year. He at once entered the ministry of the Protestant Episcopal church, being ordained in 1866 by W. H. Odenheimer, bishop of New Jersey. His clerical career was chiefly in the states of New York and New Jersey, but from 1894 to 1899 he was located at South Jacksonville, Florida.

Mr. Lighthipe was an enthusiastic amateur botanist. He became a corresponding member of the Torrey Botanical Club in 1885, and was elected an active member 8 February 1887. He was notably faithful in his devotion to the interests of the Club, attending the meetings with much regularity until the infirmities of advancing age made it necessary for him to give up the trips from his New Jersey home, and finally led him to resign. His resignation was accepted 13 January 1920, and the minutes record the fact that “in recognition of his thirty-four years of faithful service to the Club, it was voted to transfer his name to the list of corresponding members.”

He was a charming man and a pleasing speaker, but so modest and unassuming that his name rarely appeared as a botanical writer. The only scientific paper with his name as author seems to be one of a single page, entitled “Notes on the New Jersey flora,” published in the Bulletin of the Torrey Botanical Club for January 1886; but his name appears frequently in the minutes of the Club in connection with brief notes, and at the meeting of 14 April 1903 he presented a paper on “The flora of the pine barrens of New Jersey,” of which the abstract (in Torreya) occupies two printed pages. Many specimens, from New Jersey and Long Island, collected by him are no in the Local Flora herbarium, and he collected plants also during his residence in Florida. His personal herbarium of about 7000 specimens was sold in 1920 to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden.

After several years in retirement, Mr. Lighthipe died in his birthplace, Orange, 14 December 1927. His connection with the Torrey Botanical Club, as corresponding member, active member, and again as corresponding member, thus covered a total period of more than forty-two years.


Lewis Henry Lighthipe’s parents were Lewis Condit Lighthipe (26 May 1815 – 3 April 1900) and Henriette Ingraham (17 January 1817 – 7 February 1858).  Lewis Condit Lighthipe worked in a hat forming mill in Orange, Essex County, New Jersey.

Lewis Henry Lighthipe had several siblings:
Agnes Content Lighthipe (15 April 1846 – 28 January 1903)
Abbie Bennett Lighthipe (17 September 1849 – 6 January 1915)
William Ingraham Lighthipe (8 February 1853 – 1 January 1918)
Margaret Lam Lighthipe (20 March 1855 - ?)
James Alfred Lighthipe (20 Dec. 1857 - 10 April 1925)

Lewis Henry Lighthipe was married to Helen McFarlane, and together they had three children, Marion, William, and Alice.

Trinity Episcopal Church on Mill Street in Vincentown, was one of Lighthipe’s postings.  “The cornerstone of [Trinity Episcopal] church was laid on September 27, 1871 by a Bishop Oldenheimer and the church had its first service on June 2, 1872.  The Rev. Lewis H. Lighthipe was the first vicar… The parish was officially organized April 14, 1873.  In records written the day after Easter that year, Rev. Lighthipe wrote, “At this time, there are twenty-seven families, eighty seven individuals, eighteen communicants and thirty-one people in Sunday School.”  (2)  Lighthipes’ tenure at Trinity was long, but not without controversy.

New Experience for an Old Church (1895 December 24)  The New York Times
NEW-BRUNSWICK, N.J., Dec. 23 [1895]. – The Trinity Episcopal Church at Woodbridge has closed Sunday for the first time in 144 years.  The cause was a quarrel between the Vestry and the Rev. L.H. Lighthipe, who had been rector of the church several years.  He was asked to resign two weeks ago, and said he would resign when the parish should pay him his salary, which had not been paid for a long time.  Some of the property of the church was mortgaged and the pastor was paid, and last week he went to Jacksonville, Fla., to take charge of a parish.  The church was built in 1754.

According to Barnhart, Lighthipe returned to New Jersey ca. 1899.  Whether he resumed a pastoral post is unclear.


Partial List of Publications:

Lighthipe, L. H. (1886) Notes on the New Jersey flora. Bulletin of the Torrey Botanical Club 13(1): 4-5.

Rowlee, W. W., Charles E. Bessey, L. H. Lighthipe, George V. Nash (1893) Botanical Notes. Bulletin of the Torrey Botanical Club 20(2): 68-70.

Berry, Edward W. and L.H. Lighthipe (1905)  Proceedings of the Club.  Torreya 5(5):  93-96.

1.  Spamer, Earle E., Edward Daeschler, and L. Gay Vosterys-Shapiro (1995 )  A study of fossil vertebrate types in the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia:  Taxonomic, systematic, and historical perspectives.  Philadelphia:  The Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia Special Publication 16.


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University of North Carolina Herbarium
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University of North Carolina
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phone: (919) 962-6931


Last Updated: 24 January 2017