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Personal Papers of Margaret C (Nan) Anderson, 1920 - 2001

Reference Code: GBR/0271/GCPP Anderson 3

Scope and Contents

The papers listed here comprise miscellaneous items found with the papers of Margaret Anderson (mother of Nan Anderson) and there is some overlap with Margaret Anderson’s life, for example amongst the photographs. These papers present a fragmented snapshot of the early life and work of Nan Anderson. For example there is only one diary, though it would appear that others were written; there is a handful of letters written home to her father from New Hall, Cambridge; and there are some published articles and some notes on plant biology. The materials listed here are arranged broadly chronologically.


  • Creation: 1920 - 2001


Biographical / Historical

Margaret C Anderson (known as Nan) was born in London on 24 June 1937, the daughter of Margaret Swainson Anderson (née Willis, Girton 1921) and Frank Anderson, and the granddaughter of Minnie Willis (née Baldwin, Girton 1890). Nan attended the Perse School for Girls in Cambridge for a time before boarding at Malvern Girls’ College, where her mother had taught from 1924 to 1925. Nan’s mother bequeathed 8 Cavendish Avenue, Cambridge to Girton in 1952 on condition that Girton would help Nan if she needed financial assistance to complete her education. She studied Natural Sciences at New Hall, Cambridge, from 1957 to 1963 and received financial assistance from Girton during that time. She became a Research Fellow at Newnham College from 1963 to 1966, working on plant growth in relation to light in woodland and forest vegetation. Nan Anderson had inherited the family home (Old Victoria Farmhouse in Hardwick, Cambridgeshire) on her mother’s death in 1952. She lived there for a time herself and donated it to Girton in the late 1990s (it was later sold by Girton). In the late 1960s Nan joined the Pye Laboratory, part of the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), in Canberra, Australia, undertaking research on light in the canopy of eucalypt woodland and pine forests. Her work was published in numerous scientific journals. She appears to have remained with CSIRO until some time in the 1980s, working on land cover and land use. She was listed in the New Hall Directory of 2000 as still resident in Australia. Nan Anderson died on 7 August 2000. [Parts of this biographical note have been derived from an obituary published in the New Hall Society Review, 2000.]


11 item(s) : Paper

Language of Materials


Related Materials

See also GCPP Anderson 1 for papers of Nan Anderson's mother, Margaret Swainson Anderson, and GCPP Anderson 2 for papers of her grandmother, Minnie Willis.


Anderson, Margaret Cordue, 1937-2000, botanist

Finding aid date

2013-07-02 15:39:03+00:00

Repository Details

Part of the Girton College Archive Repository

The Archivist
Girton College Archive
Huntingdon Road
Cambridge CB3 0JG United Kingdom
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