S2A3 Biographical Database of Southern African Science

Ingle, Mr Herbert (agricultural chemistry)

Born: 1861, Leeds, United Kingdom.
Died: 27 October 1945, Leeds, United Kingdom.
Mr Herbert Ingle

Herbert Ingle, British agricultural chemist, qualified as Bachelor of Science (BSc) at Yorkshire College, Leeds, which was then one of the constituent colleges of the Victoria University, Manchester. He started his working life as assistant lecturer and demonstrator in chemistry at Yorkshire College, progressing to lecturer in agricultural chemistry at the same institution, then lecturer and examiner in chemistry at the Victoria University, and finally Governor of Yorkshire College, which later became the University of Leeds. He was elected a Fellow of both the Institute of Chemistry (FIC, 1888) and of the Chemical Society of London (FCS, 1889), and in 1893 became a member of the British Association for the Advancement of Science. In 1895 he married Alice Roddis, with whom he had two daughters and a son.

In addition to papers in various journals Ingle published The chemistry of fire and fire prevention (with Harry Ingle, 1900) and A manual of agricultural chemistry (1902, 5th edition 1933). In March 1903 he arrived in Pretoria with his family, having been appointed in January that year as chief chemist and head of the Division of Chemistry in the Department of Agriculture of the Transvaal Colony, for a contract period of five years. Just before his contract expired his employment was terminated by retrenchment following the grant of self-government to the Transvaal Colony. He returned to England in 1908. During his years in the Transvaal he wrote several papers. "The available plant food in soils" appeared in the Journal of the Chemical Society of London in 1905. That same year he read two papers at the joint meeting of the British and South African Associations for the Advancement of Science in Johannesburg, "The soils of the Transvaal from their chemical aspect", dealing with his analyses of soils from various parts of the colony, and "Pretoria rain and its combined nitrogen", dealing with the variable nitrogen content of rain water in the form of ammonia, nitrates and nitrites. Both papers were included in the Addresses and papers... published after the meeting (Vol. 1, pp. 115-152, 153-157). At the next annual congress of the South African Association for the Advancement of Science, held in Kimberley in 1906, he read a paper on "The manurial needs and resources of the Transvaal", which was published in the association's Report for that year (pp. 144-156). His study of "Osteoporosis in animals" appeared in the Journal of Comparative Pathology and Therapeutics in 1907. He also wrote some 40 articles and notes on the work done in the Division of Chemistry for the Transvaal Agricultural Journal, discussing the analyses of various agricultural products, soils and manures, and their interpretation. Two of these articles dealt with the Wonderfontein caves near Carletonville. Others formd part of a regular Chemical Section of the journal, which he maintained from October 1904 to July 1906.

Ingle became a member of the South African Association for the Advancement of Science while in South Africa. In January 1908 he became a foundation member of the Transvaal Biological Society, even though he left the country soon afterwards. He was also elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of South Africa in 1908. After his return to England, in collaboration with two other citizens of Leeds, he succeeded in preparing pure solid extracts of coffee and tea - a process that remained his main professional interest for the rest of his life. He was a rather private person who spent some of his free time rock climbing in the Lake District.

List of sources:
Addresses and papers read at the joint meeting of the British and South African Associations for the Advancement of Science, South Africa, 1905 (Vol. 1). Johannesburg: SAAAS, 1906.

British Association for the Advancement of Science. Report of the seventy-fifth meeting... South Africa, 1905. London: John Murray, 1906.

De Villiers, M. 1902-2002: Centenary report of the Agricultural Research Council Institute for Soil, Climate and Water. Pretoria: ARC-ISCW, 2002.

Google scholar. http://scholar.google.co.za Publications by H(erbert) Ingle.

Janse, A.J.T. A short history of the South African Biological Society. South African Biological Society Pamphlets, No. 10, 1939, pp. 49-58.

National Automated Archival Information Retrieval System (NAAIRS). http://www.national.archives.gov.za/naairs.htm Documents relating to Ingle, Herbert / Ingle, H.

National Union Catalogue, pre-1956 imprints. London: Mansell, 1968-1980.

Obituary notices: Herbert Ingle. Journal of the Chemical Society (Resumed), 1946, pp. 758-759.

Royal Society of South Africa. Transactions, 1908-1910, Vol. 1, lists of fellows and members.

South African Association for the Advancement of Science. Report, 1905/6.

South African who's who, 1908.

Transvaal [Colony]. Report of the Department of Agriculture, 1902, 1902/3-1907/8.

Transvaal Agricultural Journal, 1904-1908, Vol. 2-6.

Compiled by: C. Plug