First director of the New York Botanical Garden, which he campaigned to found starting in 1888. In 1892 Britton drafted the "Rochester Code" of botanical nomenclature, a rival to the "International Rules" of de Candolle, creating some friction with Asa Gray. In 1912 - 1913 Britton worked to organize the 1916 scientific survey of Puerto Rico, which began under the auspices of the New York Academy of Sciences, involved scientists from numerous institutions including Columbia (e.g., Franz Boas) and the American Museum, and lasted until the end of World War II. Britton personally conducted fieldwork in Puerto Rico during the period of the survey, publishing frequently on cactuses and on floras from the Caribbrean, Colombia, Mexico, Paraguay, etc. A contemporary of Osborn at the American and Hornaday at the Bronx Zoo.
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