John Linnell was born into the artistic Linnell ‘dynasty’ – his father was also named John Linnell (1792-1882), a distinguished artist (especially portraiture). His mother was Mary Palmer. John was born 25th November, 1821 at Cirencester Place (St. Marlebone).
For much of his life, he and his sisters (Elizabeth and Sarah) lived at Redstone Wood, Reigate – an estate and mansion that was created by his father. “Next door” in Redstone Wood South (later Redstone Copse) was his brother James (and his family). James was a noted landscape painter. John in the 1901 census return was described as an artist and master of drawing.
John was an enthusiastic collects of insects (especially beetles – Coleoptera) and flowers.
|Paper : List of Coleoptera: Staphylinidæ. List of the species of the family Staphylinidæ that have been taken in the Reigate district, and a record of their capture, Part 3. John Linnell, Holmesdale Natural History Club.|
He was a member of the Holmesdale Natural History Club, which was based in Reigate – holding various offices (such as curator). He was involved in Brewer’s Flora of Surrey. His herbarium passed to C E Salmon.
Some of his collections / herbarium sheets may be seen at H@H.