John Scott Keltie ~ Geographer

John Scott Keltie (1840-1927) – geographer and member of the Royal Geographical Society – was born in Dundee and then went on to be schooled in Perth. From Perth, he went up to St Andrews University and the University of Edinburgh, before studying theology at the Theological Hall of the United Presbyterian Church in Edinburgh. Despite this direction, John Scott Keltie went onto to join the firm of Macmillan as a publisher in London. By 1873, John Keltie was working on the scientific journal, Nature and writing his own geographical articles for The Times. As an active member of the Royal Geographical Society (joined in 1883), John Keltie contributed widely to the field. In 1884, he became Inspector of Geographical Education, producing a report on the state of geography teaching across Britain. The following year, he was appointed as the librarian of the Royal Geographical Society and in 1892 was elevated to the position of the society’s Secretary. Under his leadership, the Royal Society began to produce a magazine, The Geographical Journal, (1893) as a replacement of its defunct Proceedings. Keltie remained as Secretary of the society until 1915 and as joint editor of the Geographical Journal until 1917. Amongst the awards he received for his long service are the Victoria Medal of the Royal Geographical Society (1917) and a knighthood (1918). John Scott Keltie died in 1927 in London.