HISTORICAL FIGURES – BUILDERS, NATURALISTS…
(1866 ‒ 1934), a famous Hungarian botanist, a professor of botany at the Budapest University and a member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences.
He explored the Velebit flora from 1894 to 1913 whereby he discovered and described new species and subspecies. Together with his associates he discovered in 1905 an endemic species Croatian sibirea and in 1907 endemic cruciferous plant named after him Degenia velebitica. He published the results of his researches in numerous scientific papers. Especially important is his fundamental work “Flora velebitica” published posthumously in German by the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. Its four volumes contain the list of plants found until then in the area of Velebit, Senjsko Bilo and Gola Plješivica with data on their distribution and physical features of the Velebit mountain range which is of a phytogeographic importance.
(Senj, 1931 ‒ Senj, 2003), archaeologist.
He studied archaeology in Zagreb and in 1962 became the director of the museum in Senj. In 1965 he launched the yearbook Senjski zbornik which he edited for many years and in which he published many articles on Velebit, including the results of research expeditions he organised.
(Čazma, 1897.-Zagreb, 1963.), profesor botanike na Filozofskom, a zatim na Veterinarskom fakultetu Zagrebačkog sveučilišta, jedan od najuglednijih prirodoslovaca i istraživača biljnog svijeta Hrvatske i Balkana. U svom golemom životnom djelu, koje se uz ostalo bitno bavi proučavanjem fitocenologije jugoistočne Europe, Horvat je vegetacijskim studijama o hrvatskim planinama i šumskim zajednicama obuhvatio i Velebit.
(Petrinja, 1786 – Senj, 1848), engineer and a major in the Austrian army.
He gained reputation as an excellent builder of roads on Velebit: Obrovac ‒ Sv. Rok (Majstorska road), Gospić ‒ Karlobag, Karlovac ‒ Senj (Josephina road). Even though he was self-taught, his roads are skilfully built and used even today. He also built a two-level stone bridge in Tounj. He spent 20 years on Velebit and was buried according to his wish under Vratnik where he built St. Michael’s chapel. A small village in that area is named after him Majorija.
(1808 – 1882), physician, naturalist, botanist and zoologist. Together with Ljudevit Vukotinović he visited Velebit for the first time in 1852, then in 1856 and the last time in 1878. He published the results of his floristic research in Croatia, including Velebit, together with Vukotinović in the book entitled “Syllabus florae croaticae” (1857) and incorporated them later in his capital work “Flora croatica” (published 1869). In Schlosser’s honour some plants are named after him.
(1757 – 1817), a famous Hungarian botanist, professor of medicine, chemistry and botany at the University of Budapest. His work marks the beginning of real botanic research on the Velebit mountain range. He visited Velebit for the first time in 1802 with count Franz Waldstein whereby he discovered and described many new plant species and endemic plants.
As a tribute to Kitaibel, many plant species, even some growing on Velebit, are named after him, e.g. Aquilegia kitaibelii, Primula kitaibeliana etc.
(Senj, 1877 – Maribor?, 1945), doctor of law, lawyer and politician.
He worked as a lawyer in Jastrebarsko and Zagreb. As a member of the Croatian Peasant Party (HSS), he was trade and industry minister in 1925. He disappeared in 1945 on the way between Zagreb and Bleiburg.
As a member of the Yugoslav government he was the main supporter of the initiative that Plitvice and Štirovača become first national parks in Croatia. He was a member of the Croatian Mountaineering Association since 1908 and its sixth president (1921 – 1925). He is remembered as an energetic reformist of the Croatian mountaineering, initiator of numerous activities, builder of huts and a promoter of modern alpinism. He tried to infuse mountaineering with as much culture as possible, he directed the activity of the Croatian mountaineers towards the Dinarides, especially Velebit.
It was due to him that the engineer Ante Premužić managed to route a tourist trail along Velebit. Krajač’s name was given to a group of karst peaks in the Northern Velebit and a hut on the Vučjak peak (today the mountain hut Zavižan)
(1876 – 1931), a Hungarian botanist, director of a department of the Hungarian national museum in Budapest. Between 1906 and 1913 he undertook eight consecutive exploratory visits to Velebit and provided a significant contribution to the understanding of the Velebit flora. He was the first to find a flowering Velebit degenia in 1909.
(Vučja Luka, 1902 – Zagreb, 1972), a professor of botany at the Faculty of Pharmacy and Biochemistry, University of Zagreb, expert and explorer of the Croatian mountain flora, especially on Biokovo and Velebit.
He was the founder of the famous Velebit Botanical Garden (1967). Kušan wrote numerous floristic, taxonomic and vegetation studies. In terms of Velebit flora, Kušan was especially focused on the living conditions of the Velebit degenia (1963) and he also found some new sites of the Croatian sibirea on Velebit (1971). As a professor at the Faculty of Pharmacy and Biochemistry, he founded the Botanical Garden of Medicinal and Poisonous Plants in Zagreb (1947) and wrote books “Medicinal plants” (Ljekovite biljke) (1938) and “Medicinal and other useful plants” (Ljekovito i drugo korisno bilje) (1956).
(Sl. Orahovica 1882 – Zagreb, 1962), doctor of geology, director of the Geological and Palaeontological Museum in Zagreb, renowned expert on karst geology and speleology, scientist and promoter of natural sciences. He wrote “Velebit hiking guide” (Planinarski vodič po Velebitu) (1929).
(Slav. Kobaš, 1889 – Zagreb, 1979), engineer of forestry.
After finishing the Faculty of Forestry in Zagreb (1913) he worked in different places and dealt with the regulation of floods, afforestation and routing trails (Rab, Plitvice, Crikvenica, Velebit etc.). While working in the Forest Directorate at Sušak (1926 – 1935) he laid out the famous tourist trail along Velebit from Zavižan to Oštarije (Premužić Trail, 1930 – 1933). He explored Velebit, especially Rožanski kukovi crags together with Ivan Krajač and wrote about them.
(Senj, 1850 – Karlovac, 1932), Austrian officer and, even though amateur, one of the most important Croatian botanists. In four decades of his hard work, he collected an exceptional herbarium collection containing about 30,000 leaves which is today the basis of the Croatian herbarium. He cooperated with Borbás and Degen, who gave his name to certain plants in his honour (e.g. Polygala rossiana, Leontodon rossianus etc.).
Rossi’s shelter on Velebit was named after him.
(Gospić, 1928 – Gospić, 1994), doctor of veterinary medicine and renowned mountaineer. His articles and books about Velebit in which he skilfully combines facts with emotions earned him a place among our best and most popular mountaineering writers. He published countless articles in many mountaineering magazines, such as Senjski zbornik, Lički calendar, Ličke novine, etc. He knew Velebit very well and described it in his books: “Velebitskim stazama” (Along Velebit trails), “Zvona ispod zvijezda” (Bells under the stars), “Baške Oštarije i šira okolica” (Baške Oštarije and surrounding areas).
(1733 – 1810), engineering officer, one of our most deserving road builders of his time, especially known for the construction of the old Josephina road (Karlovac ‒ Senj).
Due to his great merits in constructing roads, he was named chief constructor at the court of Vienna where he died in 1810.
(village Cvitkovići near Slunj, 1886 – Zagreb, 1947), construction engineer who was in charge of trailing and constructing the railroad between Gračac and Knin whereby he discovered Cerovac caves in the south Velebit range (under Crnopac hill) in 1913.
(1755 – 1809), constructor and Austrian officer in Vojna Krajina army whose notable actions in battle earned him a hereditary baron and count title. With his troops he fought throughout Europe, but mostly in Italy and France.
Vukasović was also a famous road builder: Gospić – Karlobag road (Theresiana), Senj – Sv. Juraj, Senj – Novi Vinodolski, and especially Louisiana road between Rijeka and Karlovac.
He died after being wounded in the battle against the French in 1809 and was buried in Vienna.
(1813 – 1893), writer and naturalist, lawyer and politician. He engaged in botany by exploring primarily the Croatian flora together with his mentor, Josip Schlosser. He discovered new plants, some of which also grow on Velebit, e.g. kidney wetch (Anthyllis tricolor) etc.