Meet the Team – Archivist

Published on 29th January 2019

This week we get to know our Archivist, Vida Milovanovic


What are the key parts to your role?

As the Society’s Archivist I look after the manuscript collections. This involves:

  • Managing collections-acquisition, arrangement, and storage of material
  • Cataloguing archival material
  • Handling enquiries about our collections
  • Facilitating research visits and supervising readers
  • Promoting the collections
  • Giving tours to visitor groups

What do you like most about your job?

The collections here at the Linnean Society are the highlight and being able to work with them on a daily basis is fascinating. I’ve learned so much about natural history since starting here.

How did you end up in this job?

I discovered archives through a local history assignment during my undergraduate History degree and really enjoyed working with primary source material. Following the completion of my undergraduate degree, I studied for an MA in Archives and Records Management and have worked in archives ever since. I applied for a job at the Society because I have an interest in natural history and the opportunity of such a varied role appealed to me.

What is your favourite species of animal or plant?

Turritopsis dohrnii
Turritopsis dohrnii © Shutterstock

I love the unique and fascinating kingdom of fungi. I really enjoy going out in woods to look for fruiting bodies.

I also find Turritopsis dohrni, the biologically immortal jellyfish, pretty impressive!

What is the most interesting item to you in the Linnean Society collections?

I really like the breadth of the botanical and zoological art held in the Linnean Society and I struggle to pick one favourite but, “Coloured drawings of some English fungi” (MS/29a) by Emilia Noel (1868-1950) stand out for me.

Emilia Noel fungi
Coloured drawings of some English fungi by Emilia Noel

The original sketched on the Amazon by Alfred Russell Wallace (1823-1913) (MS/140b) are a very close second – he was a fantastic draughtsman!

What do you do in your spare time?

I enjoy photography, reading, and visiting museums & galleries, in my spare time. I’m also very passionate about good food and travel.