Davies Gilbert      


History of the Society


The Royal Geological Society of Cornwall is a geological society based in Penzance, Cornwall.  

It was founded in 1814 to promote the study of the geology of Cornwall and is the second oldest

geological society in the world, after the Geological Society of London which was founded in 1807.



Davies Giddy (later to be known as Davies Gilbert - to find out more about Davies Giddy follow the links below) was elected first president of the Cornwall Geological Society, the vice presidents were Sir Rose Price and Mr John Scobell, Dr Ayrton Paris was requested to take on the office of secretary and the chairman of the council was Sir Christopher Hawkins with the Right Honourable Lord de Dunstanville requested to honour the Society by becoming its Patron.


Other notable people include Humphrey Davey  (some of whose papers are held by the Society) and William Gregor who discovered titanium. 


The Society was honoured by the Prince Regent who announced his intention to become Patron of the Society. Lord de Dunstanville resigned from his position as patron and the society became the Royal Geological Society of Cornwall.


The society's first premises was a house in North Parade, Penzance and in 1853 the Borough of Penzance put forward plans for a new public building on the west side of Penzance. It was planned to have the Borough offices, county court and police station in the east wing, the two floors of the west wing housing the RGSC's museum and a public hall between the two run by a public company. The foundation stone was laid on 27 April 1864 and work was completed by Messr Olver & Sons of Falmouth and opened on 10 September 1867. The building, known as St John's Hall, still exists today.

Penwith Local History Group on RGSC

Penwith Local History Group on Davies Gilbert

Open University Early History of the RGSC

Grace's Guide to British Industrial History

Wikipedia on Davies Gilbert