John Augustus Voelcker, English agricultural chemist, early 20th century.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
John Augustus Voelcker (1854-1937) was the son of John Christopher Voelcker, the German analytical chemist, from whom John Augustus took over the directorship of Woburn Farm. This had been started in 1876, and was used to study the effects of chemicals on the soil. The Royal Agricultural Society of England decided to give up the farm in 1921, so he continued to research at his own expense, and in 1926, the Rothampsted Experimental Station took over.