Treasure House Presents ‘Birds, Books And Belfries’ Exhibition Open Morning

Treasure House Presents 'Birds, Books And Belfries' Exhibition Open Morning
Treasure House Presents ‘Birds, Books And Belfries’ Exhibition Open Morning

‘Birds, Books and Belfries’ will be celebrated at the Treasure House in on Saturday, 21 May, from 10am-1pm.

It explores the remarkable life and work of Reverend Francis Orpen Morris, a wildlife campaigner, writer, and vicar of Nafferton and Nunburnholme from 1810-1893.

The Irish clergyman Francis Orpen Morris is known as an ornithologist, entomologist, and parson-naturalist. He was also known for writing children’s books and books about natural history and heritage buildings. 

Morris supported animal welfare and opposed vivisection. He provided “abducent evidence” for the “mental capacities of animals” in his book Records of Animal Sagacity and Character. 

He wrote that the Bible does not contradict the idea that animals are immortal and argued for the possibility of a “future resurrection or restoration of the animal creation.”

 He wrote two anti-cruelty works, The Cowardly Cruelty of the Experimenter on Living Animals (1890) and A Defence of Our Dumb Companions (1892).

Co-founder of the Plumage League, he pioneered the movement to protect birds from the plume trade. He died on 10 February 1893 and was buried at Nunburnholme, East Riding of Yorkshire, England.

Those books are printed by Benjamin Fawcett of and feature Morris’ beautiful natural history drawings. RSPB Bempton Cliffs have also recently released film footage of its bird colonies to illustrate the habitat Morris fought to protect.

In the gallery space on the first floor near the café, visitors will find out more about the exhibition from Treasure House curator Sally Hayes, conservator Kat Saunt; a private book collector of Morris and Fawcett books; and staff from RSPB Bempton Cliffs. During the event, all speakers will share their knowledge and answer questions.

There is no need to book in advance you can just turn up on the day.The exhibition, ‘Birds, Books and Belfries’, continues until 24 September.



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