This Day In History: 1822-06-22


William Thompson (1822 – 1879) was born on this day.
He was an English naturalist and pioneer of underwater photography, a collector of marine flora and fauna who supplied both Philip Gosse and the Zoological Society of London. Thompson is credited with taking the first ever underwater photograph in 1856; this was achieved by building a waterproof casing for the camera which was then lowered to the seabed in Weymouth Bay with the shutter operated from a boat anchored above the site.

Thompson is honoured in the name of a Whale louse, Platycyamus thompsoni (Gosse, 1855).