Peter Sidney Knox-Davies

(1929-1999)





 BORN 7 December 1929 in Elendsputte, S Africa.
 DIED 25 March 1999 in Stellenbosch, S Africa.
 
 FATHER Edwin Probart Knox-Davies (1878-1967)
 MOTHER Maud Frances Thorpe (1899-1969)
 
 MARRIED  1Flora Mary Lauchlan Smith on 11 February 1956
 
 DIVORCED 28 May 1962
 
 MARRIED  2Laetitia Potgieter (1938-2006) on 20 December 1972
 CHILDREN   Evan Carl Knox-Davies (b. 7 Nov 1974)
Ula Ann Knox-Davies (b. 6 Aug 1977)


♦♦♦

Peter Knox-Davies was born December 7, 1929, at Elandsputte, Lichtenburg District in the Transvaal, the son of Edwin Probart Knox-Davies and Maud Frances Thorpe. He moved to Maritzburg at the age of eight, where he attended Harward Intermediate School (now Harward High School) and Maritzburg College, matriculating with a First-Class pass in 1946. He obtained the four-year Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture (with distinction in Horticulture) at the University of Natal at the age of 20. The following year while lecturing in Horticulture at University of Natal, he took courses in Plant Pathology and Microbiology in 1952.

He married Flora Mary Lauchlan Smith in 1956, and left for postgraduate study at the University of Wisconsin, U.S.A., in July of that year. He obtained the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Plant Pathology. His Ph.D. thesis was entitled The cytology and genetics of Helminthosporium turcicum and its ascigerous stage, Trichometasphaeria turcica. He returned to University of Natal where he worked as Lecturer and then Senior Lecturer. He divorced Flora Mary Lauchlan Smith in 1962, and moved to Stellenbosch where he was appointed Senior Lecturer.

In 1970, he was appointed Professor and Head of the Department of Plant Pathology. In 1972, he married Laetitia Potgieter. He published numerous scientific articles and papers in his field and was promoter for many M.Sc. and Ph.D. students. He was editor of many publications and discovered a number of previously unknown fungi and had a fungus named after him (knoxdaviesiae) in recognition of his work.

He developed Pick's disease and retired at the age of 61. His interests included fishing, diving, mushrooms, indigenous trees and flowers, and nature in general. Prior to his death he lived at Geluksoord in Stellenbosch, a nursing home about six kilometers from the family's home.

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