Hill, Gerald Freer (AA 134)

Gerard Freer Hill

Born: 16 February 1880, Prahan, Victoria, Australia
Died: 18 January 1954, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Gerard Freer Hill was born on 16 February 1880 to George Richard Hill and Freer Elizabeth Hill in Prahan, Victoria, Australia. Developing an interest in ornithology from a young age, Hill joined the Royal Australian Ornithological Union and was a frequent contributor to The Emu.

From August 1909 to June 1910, Hill was located at the Drysdale River Mission collecting natural history specimens for Henry Luke White. It was during this period that he recorded rock art. The ethnographer Charles Pearcy Mountford (AA 228) discussed the art recorded by Hill in a 1937 paper published in the Transactions of the Royal Society of South Australia. From February 1911 to April 1912, Hill was appointed as a naturalist and photographer on expeditions led by Henry Vere Barclay. He collected many specimens including botanic, mammals and birds. From 1913 to 1917, Hill was appointed Government Entomologist in Darwin. Between 1917 and 1919, Hill worked as as Fellow in Veterinary Research at the Walter and and Eliza Hall Institute in Melbourne. His research on mosquitoes led to Hill's employment at the Australian Institute of Tropical Medicine at Townsville, from 1919 to 1922. From 1922 until 1926, he worked at the National Museum of Victoria in Melbourne. In 1926, Hill joined the Commonwealth for Scientific  and Industrial Research where he became a world authority on termites, retiring in 1941. Hill spent his retirement in Batemans Bay area, New South Wales. In 1953, Hill moved to Queanbeyan and later died in the Liverpool Hospital in Sydney, New South Wales on 18 January 1954. Hill was survived by his widow and three sons.

The South Australian Museum Archives contains hand coloured drawings of rock art and cave paintings from the Western Australian coastal area.