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Emmy's February Find: Treasures from our Collection

Each month, Emmy - one of our volunteers on The Gardeners' House Penzance project - will be bringing us a fascinating insight into one of the pieces in our collection.

The Hypatia Trust, home to The Gardeners' House project, is home to an archive of over 2000 volumes documenting the natural history of Cornwall.

We'll be building on this archive to support the creation of new botanical collections and a rare plant registry - but for now, we're excited to bring you Emmy's Finds.

Emmy’s Finds: Discoveries in the Gardener’s House Book Collection

Marsh and Shore: Bird-watching on the Cornish Coast, Hilda M. Quick, 1948

Written by Cornish-born illustrator and wood engraver, Hilda Quick, this work explores different birds spotted along the Cornish coast, including waders, gulls and ducks.

It features numerous striking black and white vignette illustrations throughout, by the author, and a charming frontispiece of a birdwatcher in action.

Emmy tells us:

What distinguishes this book is the illustrations, which are fabulous wood engravings by the author. The text describes a variety of different coastal birds “from the beginner’s angle”. The style is conversational, but it’s not a very exciting conversation. The focus of this piece is, therefore, these wonderful pictures.

We'll be bringing another blog from Emmy soon - if there are particular areas of interest you'd like us to feature, please do let us know at


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