Marjorie Eileen Doris Courtenay-Latimer (1907-2004) is ubiquitously remembered and celebrated for her part in recognising that the large fish trawled by Capt. Hendrik Goosen and the crew of the Nerine in December 1938 was an astonishing find. This was to be identified as the first live coelacanth known to Western science. JLB Smith, the ichthyologist who first described it, named it Latimeria chalumnae after Marjorie, and the Eastern Cape river mouth near which it was found.
Reading the Border Historical Society’s The Coelacanth journal Commemorative edition in honour of Dr Marjorie Courtenay-Latimer (2004) we find a life dedicated to a great deal more that single event. Her contributions to the Eastern Cape town of East London, and to the Museum in particular, were immense.