The internationally prized collection of minerals and gem crystals featured on this web site and displayed in the Department of Earth Science at UC Santa Barbara, was a generous gift from the Bancroft family. Edward R. Bancroft, a teacher and gem cutter, offered the collection to the department, and Ed's parents—Peter Bancroft, class of '41, and his wife, Virginia—had a case especially designed and built to display the specimens.

For more than 50 years, the Bancroft family has had a close friendship with UCSB, contributing valuable minerals, gems, and fossils to geology, and a variety of other unique educational collections.

“Edward chose UCSB as the home for the collection because of our great affection for the university and its faculty, which developed while I was a student at the Riviera campus where Virginia worked,” said Peter Bancroft, who holds an undergraduate degree in education from UCSB when it was a state college.

Peter Bancroft's most memorable professor was the late geologist Charles Douglas Woodhouse, a mineralogist who was deeply committed to his students.

“When there was no money to pay his salary, Woodhouse taught for free," said Bancroft, a retired educator and an author of books about minerals. "His dedication to students so impressed us.”


University of California, Santa Barbara—Department of Earth Science
Copyright © 2005 Regents of the University of California
Send your comments to the Web Page Editor