Find information on people and their relationship to items in the collections.
The following people represent a selection of topical, unusual or interesting records from our collection. These records have been selected by our team of curators.
Eldest of 9 children; daughter of Arthur Chamberlain and Louisa Chamberlain (nee Kenrick).
Barber, Lady Martha Constance Hattie|
Martha Constance Hattie Barber (1869-1933) founded the Barber Institute of Fine Arts in 1932. Lady Barber was the wife of Sir William Henry Barber, Bt, (1860-1927), a wealthy property developer and solicitor in Birmingham. The couple married in 1893 and, in the same year, retired to Culham Court, an eighteenth-century manor house near Henley-on-Thames. There they enjoyed country pursuits while maintaining close ties with Sir Henry’s native city. In 1923, Sir Henry endowed a Chair of Law at the University of Birmingham and, one year later, he was appointed a Life Governor of the University. Though the Barbers made other benefactions to the city of Birmingham, the University was to be the principal recipient of their generosity. After her husband’s death, Lady Barber drew up a Trust Deed of Settlement which established the Barber Institute ‘for the study and encouragement of art and music’. She herself died a few months later but the Institute has become one of the finest small picture galleries in the world. [More Detail]
Businessman, Librarian, Curator
Samuel Allport FGS, the first librarian at Mason College (the forerunner of the University of Birmingham) and also the curator of the Geology Museum at the college. Prior to this he was a businessman in Brazil and Birmingham. He was a pioneer in microscopic petrology, and the Lapworth Museum of Geology has his petrological collection of early thin sections and hand specimens. [More Detail]