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You are here: Home / NAL Collections / Special Collections / Guide to the Collections / Index to the Manuscript Collections / Search Results Printer Friendly
National Agricultural Library Collections
  
Special Collections

Index to the Manuscript Collections--Search Results

15 record(s) found

Collection Number: 16
Collection Name: Beattie, Rolla Kent, Photograph Collection
Collection Group: Plant Exploration Collections
Earliest Date: 1927
Latest Date: 1949
Linear Feet: 2.75
Collection Description: The Rolla Kent Beattie Photograph Collection consists of negatives that relate to trips to Colorado, California, Hawaii, Florida, the District of Columbia, Japan, Formosa (Taiwan), Hong Kong, Indochina, Cambodia, Malaya, China, France, and England, where he visited shrines, temples, pagodas, gardens, parks, graves, exhibits, and tourist areas. The images document cultural and scenic aspects of the trips.
Historical or Biographical Sketch: A forest pathologist for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) from 1912-1945, Beattie (1875-1960) is notable for his studies of Northwest flora and chestnut blight. He spent three years in Asia for the USDA's Division of Forest Pathology surveying chestnut trees and related plants and gathering seeds to introduce disease-resistant strains to the United States.
Processed:
Formats: Photographs

Collection Number: 51
Collection Name: Dorsett-Morse Oriental Agricultural Exploration Expedition Collection
Collection Group: Plant Exploration Collections
Earliest Date: 1914
Latest Date: 1945
Linear Feet: 31.5
Collection Description: The Dorsett-Morse Oriental Agricultural Exploration Expedition Collection consists of seven photograph albums of the 1929-1931 Oriental Agricultural Exploration Expedition illustrating plant varieties and uses, landscapes, and Asian cultural practices. In addition to the photographs, the collection contains diaries created by Palemon Howard Dorsett and William Joseph Morse so that they would have a complete report of their work. Combining memoranda, expense reports, itineraries, maps, correspondence, ship logs, invoices, and photographs, the two explorers created 17 books dating from 1928-1932. The photographs in the diaries are from the same trip as the ones in the photograph albums. In 2002, the Arnold Arboretum donated 300 to 500 black and white photographs and negatives from plant expeditions of Palemon Howard Dorsett and other USDA plant explorers. Some of these photographs were taken during the Dorsett-Morse Oriental Agricultural Exploration Expedition and can be found in this collection. The remainder of the photographs and negatives are located in the Collection of Expedition Photographs from the Office of Plant Exploration. In June 2004, Morse's daughter donated a scrapbook of Dorsett and Morse's expeditions in Asia during 1930. There are 32 black and white photographs (two of which are hand-colored) with captions. The photographs in the scrapbook have negative numbers that correspond to the numbers on the negatives from the Arnold Arboretum. Morse's daughter donated more materials to Special Collections in July 2004. This donation included 9 pamphlets on Japan; a scrapbook of black and white photographs (unlabeled) depicting damage from the 1923 Tokyo earthquake; 86 loose black and white photographs taken while Morse was in Japan; packages of postcards depicting Japanese scenery and social life; a blank stationery set; local Japanese restaurant menus; and holiday cards, some of which are personalized to the Morse family.
Historical or Biographical Sketch: In 1929, Palemon Howard Dorsett (1862-1943) and William Joseph Morse (1884-1959) embarked upon a plant exploration trip officially know as the Oriental Agricultural Exploration Expedition. Dorsett was the veteran plant explorer for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Section of Plant Introduction, and Morse was a soybean specialist from the USDA Office of Forage Crops. This expedition was initiated in response to the growing importance of the soybean as a food crop during the first quarter of the 20th century. The purpose was primarily to collect soybean germplasm, and also seeds and propagating materials for other crops of interest.
Processed: Yes, view the finding aid online.
Formats: Maps; Photographs
Digitization Status: Portion of collection digitized

Collection Number: 71
Collection Name: Groff, George Weidman, Manuscript
Collection Group: Plant Exploration Collections
Earliest Date: 1920
Latest Date: 1920
Linear Feet: 0.5
Collection Description: The George Weidman Groff Manuscript is a three-volume typewritten manuscript [ca. 1949] of notes and photographs by George Weidman Groff on an expedition to Cochin, China, and Siam (now Thailand) during May and June 1920, in search of canker-resistant citrus fruits.
Historical or Biographical Sketch: Horticulturist George Weidman Groff (1884-1954) was director and professor of agriculture at Canton Christian College in Canton, China. He served as a part-time field assistant for the USDA Office of Crop Physiology and Breeding Investigations from 1918-1920. He and Otto August Reinking (b. 1890) initiated a plant expedition to China to search for canker-resistant citrus fruits. While abroad during the course of his career, Groff studied plant life in South China, Indo-China, Thailand, the Philippines, and Malaya. Groff was responsible for the development of certain citrus fruits, including improvement and introduction of papaya, lychee, eucalyptus robusta, the Siam banana, other sub-tropical fruits, and some ornamentals. He was largely responsible for gathering the largest collection of bamboo in Southeast Asia. Groff successfully imported some good livestock breeders from the U.S. and improved the local livestock quality.
Processed:
Digitization Status: None

Collection Number: 87
Collection Name: Harlan, Harry V., Manuscript
Collection Group: Plant Exploration Collections
Earliest Date: 1957
Latest Date: 1957
Linear Feet: 1
Collection Description: The Harry V. Harlan Manuscript is titled "Manuscript of One Man's Life with Barley; The Memories and Observations of Harry V. Harlan." The manuscript, written by Harlan in 1957, is in loose-leaf form with original handwriting. Harlan's purpose in writing the book was to contribute a general picture of the evolution of barley research at a time (early 1910-1944) during which he was one of the few scholars entirely devoted to its study. Topics include plant exploration, barley background, barley breeding, adventures and discoveries at American experiment stations, uses of barley, and advice.
Historical or Biographical Sketch: Harry V. Harlan graduated from Kansas State College in 1904. He worked in Manila, Philippines, from 1905-1908. After two years of graduate school at Kansas State, he joined the U.S. Department of Agriculture and worked for David Fairchild, then Mark Carleton, both scientists. Even though he had no prior experience with barley, he was assigned to the barley project.
Processed:
Digitization Status: None

Collection Number: 124
Collection Name: Passmore, Deborah Griscom, Watercolor Collection
Earliest Date: 1911
Latest Date: 1911
Linear Feet: 4
Collection Description: The Deborah Griscom Passmore Watercolor Collection consist of an original manuscript "Flowers in Water Color: Wildflowers of America" by Deborah G. Passmore. There are 61 original, signed Passmore watercolors in this collection, as well as several signed sketches, unsigned works, and two watercolors signed by another artist, Dora Paxon. In the front of the manuscript, there is an anonymous, typescript biography of Passmore which is immediately followed by a brief, handwritten note detailing Passmore's death, and the signature of Carrie Harrison. (Her relationship to Passmore is unknown, but she may have been a botanist in the Bureau of Plant Industry, U.S. Department of Agriculture.) There are several newspaper obituaries pasted onto the end of the typescript, below Carrie Harrison's signature.
Historical or Biographical Sketch: Born in Delaware County, Pennsylvania, on July 17, 1840, Deborah Griscom Passmore was educated in a Friends school and studied art under several famous artists including Thomas Moran. She also attended the School of Design and the Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia before coming to Washington, D.C., where, in 1892, she took an appointment with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Division of Pomology. She painted for many exhibits and flowers and fruits in watercolor became her specialty.
Processed: Yes, view the finding aid online.
Formats: Agricultural Art and Memorabilia
Digitization Status: None

Collection Number: 240
Collection Name: Cunningham, Isabel S., Collection on Frank N. Meyer
Collection Group: Plant Exploration Collections
Earliest Date: 1907
Latest Date: 1919
Linear Feet: 2.5
Collection Description: The Isabel S. Cunningham Collection on Frank N. Meyer consists of photocopies of original correspondence, documents, and articles relating to Frank N. Meyer (1875-1918), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) plant explorer from 1902-1918, collected by Isabel S. Cunningham during research for her book, Frank N. Meyer: Plant Hunter in Asia. In April 2006, Cunningham donated more of her research notes, articles, photographs, and a first edition annotated copy of Frank N. Meyer: Plant Hunter in Asia.
Historical or Biographical Sketch: In 1901, Frans Nicholas Meijer (1875-1918) emigrated from the Netherlands to America where he became Frank Meyer. Almost immediately, Meyer went to work for USDA scientist Erwin F. Smith, known internationally for his groundbreaking work in bacteriology. In 1902, Meyer began working at USDA’s Plant Introduction Station in Santa Ana, California. The period from 1905-1908 marked the beginning of Meyer’s expeditions to Asia, where he collected plants in China, Russia, and Japan, as well as other countries. During his second expedition from 1909-1912, he collected in Europe, Russia, and in China. From 1913-1915, he explored and collected plants in Russia and China. Meyer’s fourth and final expedition took place from 1916-18. The purpose of this journey is stated in the accompanying typescript, dated July 25, 1916. Meyer died an untimely death in June of 1918. While traveling on the Feng Yang Maru Japanese riverboat, destined for Shanghai, he fell overboard into the Yangtze River. His body was recovered, but the circumstances of his death will always remain a mystery and source of speculation. Honored the world over for his contributions as a plant explorer, Frank Meyer’s work touches us all everyday. From apricots to wild pears, his introductions number over 2,500.
Processed: Yes, view the finding aid online.
Digitization Status: None

Collection Number: 280
Collection Name: Collection of Expedition Photographs from the Office of Plant Exploration
Collection Group: Plant Exploration Collections
Earliest Date: 1910
Latest Date: 1945
Linear Feet: 4.5
Collection Description: The Collection of Expedition Photographs from the Office of Plant Exploration consists of lantern slides and negatives of three U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) plant-collecting expeditions: a trip to Southeast Asia and China in the latter half of 1922 possibly by J. F. Rock; a forage and fruit-collecting trip to Germany and the Soviet Union from July to September 1929 by H. L. Westover and W. E. Whitehouse; and an expedition to Caucasus (now part of Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, and some of Russia including Chechnya), Turkestan (in current Uzbekistan), and Siberia from 1910-1911 by Frank E. Meyer. Lantern slides are mostly black and white. In 2002, the Arnold Arboretum donated 300 to 500 black and white photographs and negatives related to Palemon Howard Dorsett. Those photographs and negatives relating to the Dorsett-Morse Oriental Agricultural Exploration Expedition, which took place between 1929 and 1931, were separated and placed in the Dorsett-Morse Oriental Agricultural Exploration Expedition Collection. Most of the envelopes contain detailed descriptions including subject, date, place, and photographer. The dates range from 1914 to 1945, with the bulk being from 1924 to 1930. The subject matter is plants and landscapes. The geographic areas include China, Japan, Korea, the Soviet Union, Spain, Africa, Mexico, Central and South America. Among the photographers are Dorsett, Piemeisal, Kephart, Whitehouse, Westover, Ryerson, Archer, McMullan, Polhamus, Muller, and Erlanson.
Processed:
Formats: Photographs
Digitization Status: None

Collection Number: 295
Collection Name: Meyer, Frank N., Collection
Collection Group: Plant Exploration Collections
Earliest Date: 1905
Latest Date: 1918
Linear Feet: 6
Collection Description: The Frank N. Meyer Collection consists of a typescript, certificate and photographs of Meyer. The typescript contains excerpts from letters between Frank N. Meyer and his superior, David Fairchild in the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Bureau of Plant Industry, relating to Meyer’s plant exploration trip to South China in 1916-1918. Photographs of various botanical specimens are included. The last segment of typescripts concerns Meyer’s drowning on June 2, 1918, in the Yangtze River en route to Shanghai. The 1905 certificate identifies USDA plant explorer Frank N. Meyer as an agricultural explorer of the United States Department of Agriculture who is visiting Manchuria and other parts of China for “the purpose of Aiding in Agricultural Development, especially along the line of Pomology.” A black and white photograph of Meyer has a label which reads "Frank N. Meyer, Agricultural Explorer. Born November 29, 1875. Died June 1, 1918. Returning from a successful raid in the high mountains. Tired but satisfied. Wu Tai Shan, Shansi, China. February 25, 1908." A photograph of Meyer and Fairchild has a label which reads "Frank Meyer (right) converses with renowned plant explorer Dr. David Fairchild. At the young age of 22, Fairchild helped to create the USDA’s Office of Foreign Seed and Plant Introduction where he served as chairman from 1904-28. Throughout Meyer’s travels, Fairchild was a guiding force, providing insight and support through his letters."
Historical or Biographical Sketch: In 1901, Frans Nicholas Meijer (1875-1918) emigrated from the Netherlands to America where he became Frank Meyer. Almost immediately, Meyer went to work for the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Erwin F. Smith, known internationally for his groundbreaking work in bacteriology. In 1902, Meyer began working at USDA’s Plant Introduction Station in Santa Ana, California. The period from 1905-1908 marked the beginning of Meyer’s expeditions to Asia, where he collected plants in China, Russia, and Japan, as well as other countries. During his second expedition from 1909-1912, he collected in Europe, Russia, and in China. From 1913-1915, he explored and collected plants in Russia and China. Meyer’s fourth and final expedition took place from 1916-1918. The purpose of this journey is stated in the accompanying typescript, dated July 25, 1916. In summary, Meyer was to explore the portion of China lying southeast of Shanghai and south of the Yangtze River. He was to seek and collect southern peaches, bamboos—both timber and edible—the tung or wood-oil tree, improved varieties of tallow trees, the litchi, the longan, root crops for wet lands, new varieties of rice, soy beans, raspberries, blackberries, pears, chestnuts, and ornamental shrubs and timber trees. Meyer died an untimely death in June 1918. A passenger on the Feng Yang Maru Japanese riverboat, destined for Shanghai, he fell overboard into the Yangtze River. His body was recovered, but the circumstances of his death will always remain a mystery and source of speculation. Honored the world over for his contributions as a plant explorer, Frank Meyer’s work touches us all every day. From apricots to wild pears, his introductions number over 2,500.
Processed:
Digitization Status: Entire collection digitized

Collection Number: 308
Collection Name: USDA Textile Publications
Earliest Date: 1920
Latest Date: 1962
Linear Feet: 0.25
Collection Description: The USDA Textile Publications Collection consists of brochures, reprints, leaflets, bulletins, and newspaper clippings related to clothing, textile history, fashion, fabrics, construction, consumer advice, and sewing machines.
Historical or Biographical Sketch: During the 1920s and 1930s, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Division of Textiles and Clothing of the Bureau of Home Economics was responsible for research on textiles and clothing. In 1937 this division was renamed the Textiles and Clothing Division. The reorganization of the USDA in 1942 placed research on textiles and clothing under the Bureau of Human Nutrition and Home Economics, Agricultural Research Administration. When the USDA reorganized in 1953, the research remained under the same bureau (re-designated as a division) under the new Agricultural Research Service (ARS). In 1957, the research was moved to the Clothing and Housing Research Division, Institute of Home Economics, ARS. Since the mid-1960s, research on textiles and clothing has taken place in ARS regional laboratories.
Processed:
Formats: Reprints
Digitization Status: None

Collection Number: 325
Collection Name: USDA Forage Crop Investigations Records
Collection Group: Plant Exploration Collections
Earliest Date: 1909
Latest Date: 1930
Bulk Dates: 1929-1931
Linear Feet: 4.5
Collection Description: The USDA Forage Crop Investigations Records consist of field notes written by William J. Morse from 1909-1930 while he was working for the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forage Crop Investigations. These 55 hand-written ledgers document Morse’s discoveries of foreign plants throughout his international travels. Almost half of the field notes relate to the Dorsett-Morse Oriental Agricultural Exploration Expedition from 1929-1931. See Collection 325 for journals and photograph albums related to the expedition.
Historical or Biographical Sketch: William J. Morse (1884-1959) was a soybean specialist from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Office of Forage Crops. He was a junior team member on the Dorsett-Morse Oriental Agricultural Exploration Expedition and was charged with the collection of soybean materials. The Division of Forage Crops and Diseases operated under the Bureau of Plant Industry of the USDA. Its main purpose was to research crops that are grown specifically for livestock consumption. It started in the 1900s as the Office of Forage-crop Investigations, and was re-designated the Office of Forage Crops in 1926. In 1929 the office took on research related to forage disease from the Office of Vegetable and Forage Crops, and became the Office (Division in 1931) of Forage Crops and Diseases. This division became a divisional component of the Field Crops Division of the Bureau of Plant Industry, Soils, and Agricultural Research in 1946. After the USDA reorganization of 1953, the Division became the Forage and Range Section of the Field Crops Research Branch, Agricultural Research Service.
Processed:
Formats: Photographs
Digitization Status: None

Collection Number: 346
Collection Name: Cunningham, Isabel S., Collection on Howard Scott Gentry
Collection Group: Plant Exploration Collections
Earliest Date: 1940
Latest Date: 1995
Bulk Dates: 1984-1993
Linear Feet: 0.5
Collection Description: The Isabel S. Cunningham Collection on Howard Scott Gentry consists of articles, notes, photographs, and Cunningham's draft articles on Howard Gentry's expeditions as plant collector. Cunningham collected these materials to write several articles about Gentry. Cunningham donated these materials in April 2006.
Historical or Biographical Sketch: Howard Scott Gentry (1903-1993) earned a bachelor's degree in vertebrate zoology from the University of California at Berkeley in 1931. In 1933, Gentry started plant expeditions in Yaqui country (Sonora-Chihuahua, Mexico) and the following year in Indian barranca country in Mexico. He published his first book titled Rio May Plants of Sonora-Chihuahua in 1942. Gentry started working for the United States Department of Agriculture's Rubber Office in 1942 until 1945. The next four years he was a research botanist at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. In 1947 he obtained a Ph.D. in botany from the University of Michigan. From 1950 to 1971, Gentry was a plant collector for the New Crops Research Branch, USDA, and led expeditions into Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Iran, and Mexico. In 1970 Gentry opened the Gentry Experimental Farm in Murrieta, California, and became a research botanist at the Desert Botanical Garden two years later. He began his final position as Research Director for the Desert Botanical Garden in 1985.
Processed: Yes, view the finding aid online.
Formats: Photographs
Digitization Status: None

Collection Number: 347
Collection Name: Jefferson, Roland Maurice, Collection
Collection Group: Plant Exploration Collections
Earliest Date: 1912
Latest Date: 2007
Bulk Dates: 1979-1989
Linear Feet: 2
Collection Description: The Roland Jefferson Collection contains articles, correspondence, e-mail, documents, lectures, photographs, programs, and other notes. Some of the articles, correspondence, and programs are in Japanese or Taiwanese. The majority of the collection highlights Jefferson’s work, including plant expeditions for cherry trees at the United States National Arboretum and his post-retirement lectures. The collection also mentions Jefferson’s work with plant labels, crabapples, the dogwood seed exchange program, and the President Reagan Cherry Tree. Part of the collection was donated by Roland Maurice Jefferson in April 2006. Isabel S. Cunningham added to the collection with an April 2006 donation of materials which she collected to write a series of articles on Jefferson’s work as a plant explorer.
Historical or Biographical Sketch: Roland Maurice Jefferson (1923-) was born in Washington, D.C. on September 3, 1923. In 1950 he obtained a bachelor's degree in botany from Howard University and started making plant labels at the United States National Arboretum (USNA) in 1956. The next year Jefferson was promoted to become the first African-American botanist at the USNA and over the next decade studied crabapples. In 1973, Jefferson started compiling historical and scientific data about the Japanese cherry trees planted in Washington, D.C.'s Potomac Park, which included taking cuttings from the surviving trees. In 1977 he published "The Japanese flowering cherry trees of Washington, D.C., which was later translated into Japanese. In 1978-1979 he was part of a plant expedition in Europe to study cherry and crabapple trees. In 1981, Nancy Reagan presented the President Reagan Cherry Tree to Japan, which Jefferson propagated from the 1912 cherry tree that First Lady Taft planted from Japan. From 1981-1983 he went to Japan to study, lecture, locate, evaluate, and collect cherry tree budwood from Prunus germplasm or ornamental cherry trees. He started the dogwood seed exchange program from 1982-1983, where Japanese school children collected cherry seeds in exchange for American collected dogwood seeds. In 1983 he married Keiko Ishisaki. In 1986, Jefferson led expeditions into Japan, Korea, and Taiwan to study cherry trees. He retired from the USNA in 1987, but continued to lecture on cherry trees in Japan through 1998.
Processed: Yes, view the finding aid online.
Text Available in NALDR: http://naldc.nal.usda.gov/download/CAT78696066/PDF
Formats: Photographs
Digitization Status: None

Collection Number: 351
Collection Name: Rock, Joseph Francis Charles, Papers
Collection Group: Plant Exploration Collections
Earliest Date: 1928
Latest Date: 1928
Bulk Dates: 1928
Linear Feet: 0.25
Collection Description: The Joseph Francis Charles Rock Papers contain a bibliofilm (microfilm photograph) of Rock's specimen notebook from 1928. Lists a specimen number followed by a description of the the specimen and the location or altitude. The actual specimens are currently at Harvard University Herbaria.
Historical or Biographical Sketch: Joseph Francis Charles Rock (1884-1962) was a plant explorer, botanist, linguist, and correspondent for National Geographic Magazine. He is famous for his work with studying the Nakhi (Naxi) language and his works on Hawaiian plants.
Processed:
Digitization Status: None

Collection Number: 371
Collection Name: Dorsett, Palemon Howard, Persimmon Collection
Collection Group: Plant Exploration Collections
Earliest Date: 1924
Latest Date: 1930
Bulk Dates: 1924-1925, 1930
Linear Feet: 1.5
Collection Description: The Palemon Howard Dorsett Persimmon Collection contains 200 photographs of persimmon fruits, trees, workers, and related views. The photographs were taken by Palemon Howard Dorsett on several plant exploration trips to Asia from 1924-1930. There are many handwritten legends and Chinese writing. Materials originated from the USDA New Crops Research Branch offices in Beltsville, Maryland. Some of the photographs may duplicate those found in the Dorsett-Morse Oriental Exploration Expedition Collection held in Special Collections. Besides photographs, there is a blueprint of the persimmon hot-water processing kiln for use in the treatment of Chinese persimmons in Peiping, China and the vicinity, 1930. Additionally, there is a typewritten document and notes on the establishment of the Chico, California, Testing and Propagating Garden in 1930. The collection includes the publication Where Persimmon Was King: P.H. Dorsett's Photographic Tour Around Peking, China 1924-1931 edited by William H. Preston.
Historical or Biographical Sketch: Palemon Howard Dorsett (1862-1943) was a United States Department of Agriculture plant explorer with USDA Section of Plant Introduction. Dorsett traveled to the persimmon growing region north of Peiping (now Beijing). He and his son James explored the region in 1924-25 and then again in 1930-31 with the Oriental Agricultural Exploration Expedition.
Processed:
Formats: Photographs
Digitization Status: None

Collection Number: 376
Collection Name: Collection of papers related to the translation of Five Continents by Nikolai Ivanovich Vavilov.
Earliest Date: 1992
Latest Date: 1997
Linear Feet: 2
Collection Description: This is a collection of papers related to the National Agricultural Library's translation project in which Doris Love translated the Russian book Five Continents written by Nikolai Ivanovich Vavilov. In 1992, Love was in communication with Henry L. Shands, Associate Deputy Administrator, Genetic Resources, National Program Staff. Records include correspondence, drafts, final text, contract papers, photocopies of images, and diskettes. There is a copy of the book in Special Collections.
Historical or Biographical Sketch: Russian Nikolai Ivanovich Vavilov (1887-1943) is recognized as one of the foremost plant geographers of the twentieth century. Nikolai I. Vavilov was born into the family of a merchant in Moscow. In 1911, having graduated from the Agricultural Institute, Vavilov continued to work at the Department of Agriculture Proper headed by Prof. Pryanishnikov. In 1911-1912 Vavilov did practical work at the Bureau for Applied Botany and at the Bureau of Mycology and Phytopathology of the Agricultural Scientific Committee. In 1913-1914, Vavilov traveled to Europe where he studied plant immunity, mostly with Prof. W. Bateson, a co-founder of the science of genetics. In autumn 1917 the Head of the Bureau for Applied Botany Robert. E. Regel (1867-1920) supported the nomination of N.I.Vavilov, a young professor from the Saratov Higher Agricultural Courses, as Deputy Head of the Bureau. Vavilov continued his investigations in Saratov where he has awarded the title of Professor of the Saratov University in 1918. During the Civil War, from 1918 to 1920, Saratov became the scientific stronghold for the Department of Applied Botany (Bureau till 1917). In 1920 Vavilov was elected head of the Department, and soon moved to Petrograd (St.Petersburg now) together with his students and associates. In 1924, the Department was transformed into the Institute of Applied Botany and new Crops (VIR since 1930), and occupied the position of the central nationwide institution responsible for collecting the world plant diversity and studying it for the purposes of plant breeding. He took part in over 100 collecting missions. His major foreign expeditions included those to Iran (1916); the United States, Central and South America (1921, 1930, 1932); the Mediterranean and Ethiopia (1926-1927). For his expedition to Afghanistan in 1924 Vavilov was awarded the N.M.Przhevalskii Gold Medal of the Russian Geographic Society. These missions and the determined search for plants were based on the Vavilov's concepts in the sphere of evolutionary genetics, i.e. the Law of Homologous Series in Variation (1920) and the theory of the Centers of Origin of Cultivated Plants (1926). Vavilov, the symbol of glory of the national science, is at the same time the symbol of its tragedy. As early as in the beginning of the 1930's his scientific programs were being deprived of governmental support. In the stifling atmosphere of a totalitarian state, the institute headed by Vavilov turned into a resistance point to the pseudo-scientific concepts of Trofim D.Lysenco. As a result of this controversy, Vavilov was arrested in August 1940, and his closest associates were also sacked and imprisoned. He died in the Saratov prison of dystrophia on 26 January 1943 and was buried in a common prison grave.
Processed:
Digitization Status: None


Last Modified : August 2, 2013

 
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