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United States Exploring Expedition Collection

Creator::
United States Exploring Expedition (1838-1842)  Search this
Extent:
4.37 cu. ft. (6 document boxes) (1 half document box) (1 12x17 box) (1 16x20 box)
Type:
Archival materials
Collection descriptions
Scientific illustrations
Manuscripts
Date:
1838-1885
Descriptive Entry:
Several reports covering the scientific work of the expedition were made, and most were published. One of the exceptions was the ichthyology report, which Charles Pickering was originally assigned to prepare. It was delayed, however; and by the middle of 1849, Jean Louis Agassiz had been placed in charge of the work. Due to the pressures of his many other commitments, and to the growing reluctance of Congress to appropriate additional funds after 1862, Agassiz never completed the project. In 1885, twelve years after Agassiz's death, the fish specimens, his manuscript, and its illustrations were sent to the United States National Museum.

The two illustrators, Joseph Drayton and Alfred T. Agate, produced numerous drawings of fishes during the expedition, many of which are in this collection. Drayton also helped supervise the illustrations and engraving work for a number of the scientific reports which were published.

A number of the items covering the ichthyology of the United States Exploring Expedition have been held, along with the specimens, by the Division of Fishes of the United States National Museum of Natural History. This record unit includes an unsigned manuscript on the fishes of the expedition, apparently the work of Jean Louis Agassiz which was sent to the United States National Museum in 1885; notes on the fishes and echinoderms collected by the expedition, either by Charles Pickering or based on his notes; a number of items concerning the drawings, specimens and the itinerary of the expedition; and drawings and illustrations of fishes done during the voyage or as illustrations for the ichthyology report. An unpublished manuscript on the fishes of the United States Exploring Expedition by Henry Ward Fowler has been placed in Record Unit 7180.

In addition to the ichthyological materials some items in this collection were held by the Smithsonian Library. These items consist of a letter from R. R. Waldron to Mrs. Sarah Jane Hale concerning her son Horatio Hale's travel plan, 1841; a manuscript on the expedition by Titian Ramsay Peale, which was published by the American Historical Records, 1874; notebooks on botany, mostly by William Dunlop Brackenridge; catalogues and annotated lists of ethnological, geological, mineralogical, and natural history specimens collected by the expedition; drawings of echinoderms by Drayton; original invoices and other official papers of the expedition, mostly shipping lists of specimens sent to the United States; and some loose sheets from the purser's account book, 1838-1842.
Historical Note:
The United States Exploring Expedition, also known as the Wilkes Expedition, was authorized by an act of Congress in 1836 as "a surveying and exploring expedition to the Pacific Ocean and South Seas." It was prompted by a desire to obtain information concerning an area which was rapidly becoming of interest to American traders and whalers. A contingent of scientists accompanied the expedition, commanded by Lieutenant Charles Wilkes of the United States Navy, including Charles Pickering, Titian Ramsay Peale, Joseph P. Couthouy, James Dwight Dana, William Rich, William Dunlop Brackenridge, and Horatio Hale. In addition to the scientists, two illustrators, Joseph Drayton and Alfred T. Agate, also accompanied the expedition.

The expedition, which consisted of five ships and crews provided by the United States Navy, sailed from Norfolk, Virginia, in August 1838. By the time it returned to New York in June 1842, it had visited and explored Madeira, both coasts of South America, Tierra del Fuego, the South Pacific islands, Australia, New Zealand, Antarctica, the Hawaiian Islands, Oregon, California, the Philippine Islands, Singapore, the Cape of Good Hope, and St. Helena. Wilkes' voyage along the Antarctic coast during the expedition established the existence of that continent.

During the voyage, the scientists gathered specimens and studied the flora and fauna of each place visited. At various points along the route specimens were packed and sent back to the United States. Eventually, the specimens were placed in the custody of the National Institute in Washington, D.C., and installed in the Great Hall of the Patent Office. They remained there until their removal to the Smithsonian Institution in 1858.
Topic:
Geology  Search this
Anthropology  Search this
Botany  Search this
Ichthyology  Search this
Invertebrate zoology  Search this
Natural history  Search this
Scientific expeditions  Search this
Invertebrates  Search this
Zoologists  Search this
Geologists  Search this
Anthropologists  Search this
Botanists  Search this
Ichthyologists  Search this
Naturalists  Search this
Genre/Form:
Scientific illustrations
Manuscripts
Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7186, United States Exploring Expedition Collection
Identifier:
Record Unit 7186
See more items in:
United States Exploring Expedition Collection
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-sia-faru7186
Additional Online Media:

Duplicate shells collected by the United States Exploring Expedition, under Capt. C. Wilkes, U.S.N

Author:
United States Exploring Expedition (1838-1842)  Search this
Wilkes, Charles 1798-1877  Search this
Smithsonian Institution  Search this
United States Exploring Expedition (1838-1842)  Search this
Physical description:
4 leaves ; 25 cm
Type:
Catalogs and collections
Date:
1865
1865]
Topic:
Shells  Search this
Call number:
QL406 .U55 1865
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_457311

Folder 2 Itinerary of the United States Exploring Expedition sent to Louis Agassiz by Charles Wilkes

Collection Creator::
United States Exploring Expedition (1838-1842)  Search this
Container:
Box 6 of 9
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7186, United States Exploring Expedition Collection
See more items in:
United States Exploring Expedition Collection
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7186-refidd1e1073

Australia and New South Wales from Narrative of the United States Exploring Expedition.

Creator:
Wilkes, Charles  Search this
Language:
English
Type:
Prints
Place:
New South Wales, Australia
Publication Place:
Philadelphia
Publication Date:
1845
Topic:
Maps  Search this
Cartography  Search this
Publisher:
Lea and Blanchard
Image ID:
SIL-Sil19-02-250
Catalog ID:
227517
Rights:
No Copyright - United States
See more items in:
See Wonder
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:silgoi_66646

Structure and classification of zoophytes / by James D. Dana ..., geologist of the United States Exploring Expedition ; during the years 1838, 1839, 1840, 1841, 1842

Title:
Zoophytes
Author:
Dana, James Dwight 1813-1895  Search this
Author:
United States Exploring Expedition (1838-1842)  Search this
Physical description:
[5], 8-132 pages : illustrations ; 32 cm
Type:
Electronic resources
Date:
1846
Topic:
Ctenophora  Search this
Ctenophora--Classification  Search this
Cnidaria  Search this
Cnidaria--Classification  Search this
Call number:
QL379 .D16
QL379.D16
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_148015

Narrative of the United States exploring expedition. During the years 1838, 1839, 1840, 1841, 1842. By Charles Wilkes... In five volumes, with thirteen maps..

Author:
Wilkes, Charles 1798-1877  Search this
Subject:
United States Exploring Expedition (1838-1842)  Search this
Physical description:
5 v. fronts. (v. 1-2, ports.) illus. (incl. plans, music) plates, maps (part fold.) 26 cm
Type:
Electronic resources
Place:
Oceania
South America
Hawaii
Oregon
Antarctica
Date:
1849
Topic:
Discovery and exploration  Search this
Description and travel  Search this
Call number:
Q115 .W68 1849
Q115.W68 1849
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_70920

United States Exploring Expedition. During the year 1838, 1839, 1840, 1841, 1842. Under the command of Charles Wilkes, U.S.N..

Author:
United States Exploring Expedition (1838-1842)  Search this
Wilkes, Charles 1798-1877  Search this
United States Congress  Search this
Engraver:
Dougal, William H. 1822-1895  Search this
Illustrator:
Stuart, Fred D.  Search this
Former owner:
Library of Congress DSI  Search this
Subject:
United States Exploring Expedition (1838-1842)  Search this
Physical description:
19 v. in 21. illus., plates, ports., maps, plans, tables, diagrs. 33 x 25 cm. + atlas (11 v. ; 57 x 37 cm.)
Type:
Electronic resources
Place:
Pacific Ocean
Antarctica
Northwest Coast of North America
Date:
1844
1844-1874
Topic:
Scientific expeditions  Search this
Call number:
Q115 .W6X
Q115.W6X 1844
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_298484
Additional Online Media:

Narrative of the United States Exploring Expedition : during the years 1838, 1839, 1840, 1841, 1842 / by Charles Wilkes ; in five volumes, and an atlas

Author:
Wilkes, Charles 1798-1877  Search this
Subject:
United States Exploring Expedition (1838-1842)  Search this
Physical description:
5 v. : ill., maps, plans, ports. ; 34 cm. + 1 atlas (5 folded leaves of plates : 5 maps ; 34 cm.)
Type:
Electronic resources
Place:
United States
Oceania
South America
Hawaii
Oregon
Antarctica
Date:
1845
1845, c1844
Topic:
Voyages around the world  Search this
Scientific expeditions  Search this
Discovery and exploration  Search this
American  Search this
Description and travel  Search this
Call number:
Q115 .W68 1845b
Q115.W68 1845b
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_437581
Additional Online Media:

Narrative of the United States exploring expedition during the years 1838, 1839, 1840, 1841, 1842. By Charles Wilkes ... With illustrations and maps. In five volumes and an atlas

Author:
Wilkes, Charles 1798-1877  Search this
Subject:
United States Exploring Expedition (1838-1842)  Search this
Physical description:
5 v. fronts. (v. 1-2, 4-5) illus., plates, ports., maps (part double) tables. and atlas of 5 fold. maps. 29 cm
Type:
Electronic resources
Place:
Oceania
South America
Hawaii
Oregon
Antarctica
Date:
1845
Topic:
Discovery and exploration  Search this
Description and travel  Search this
Call number:
Q115 .W68 1845c
Q115.W68 1845c
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_227517

Narrative of the United States exploring expedition during the years 1838, 1839, 1840, 1841, 1842 / by Charles Wilkes .. ; in five volumes and an atlas

Author:
Wilkes, Charles 1798-1877  Search this
Subject:
United States Exploring Expedition (1838-1842)  Search this
Physical description:
5 v., [73] leaves of plates (9 folded) : ill., maps, music, ports. ; 29 cm. + 1 atlas (5 folded col. maps ; 29 cm.)
Type:
Electronic resources
Place:
Oceania
South America
Hawaii
Oregon
Antarctica
Date:
1845
Topic:
Discovery and exploration  Search this
Description and travel  Search this
Call number:
Q115 .W68 1845c
Q115.W68 1845c
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_396767

Structure and classification of zoophytes / by James D. Dana ..., geologist of the United States Exploring Expedition ; during the years 1838, 1839, 1840, 1841, 1842

Title:
Zoophytes
Author:
Dana, James Dwight 1813-1895  Search this
Inscriber:
Dana, James Dwight 1813-1895  Search this
Former owner:
Baird, Spencer Fullerton 1823-1887 DSI  Search this
Author:
United States Exploring Expedition (1838-1842)  Search this
Physical description:
[5], 8-132 pages : illustrations ; 32 cm
Type:
Books
Date:
1846
Topic:
Ctenophora  Search this
Ctenophora--Classification  Search this
Cnidaria  Search this
Cnidaria--Classification  Search this
Call number:
QL379 .D36 1846 quarto
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_1057933

MANUSCRIPT OF HENRY WEED FOWLER ENTITLED THE FISHES OBTAINED BY THE UNITED STATES EXPLORING EXPEDITION, 1838-1842 UNDER THE COMMAND OF CAPTAIN CHARLES WILKES, UNPUBLISHED,

Collection Creator::
Fowler, Henry Weed, 1878-1965  Search this
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7180, Henry Weed Fowler Papers
Identifier:
Record Unit 7180, Series 1
See more items in:
Henry Weed Fowler Papers
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7180-refidd1e243

Crater on East Maui, called by the natives Haleakala or House of the Sun from Narrative of the United States exploring expedition.

Creator:
Wilkes, Charles  Search this
Language:
English
Type:
Prints
Place:
Maui, Hawaii
Publication Place:
Philadelphia
Publication Date:
1845
Topic:
Cartography  Search this
Volcanology  Search this
Maps  Search this
Publisher:
Lea and Blanchard
Image ID:
SIL-Sil19-04-304
Catalog ID:
227517
Rights:
No Copyright - United States
See more items in:
See Wonder
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:silgoi_66647

The Tufa Crater, Diamond Hill, on Southern Oahu from United States Exploring Expedition. During the year 1838, 1839, 1840, 1841, 1842.

Creator:
Wilkes, Charles  Search this
Language:
English
Type:
Prints
Place:
Oahu (Hawaii)
Publication Place:
Philadelphia (Pennsylvania)
Date:
1844-1874
Publication Date:
1844-1874
Topic:
Geology  Search this
Geography  Search this
Publisher:
C. Sherman
Image ID:
SIL-Sil19-14-249_crop
Catalog ID:
298484
Rights:
No Copyright - United States
See more items in:
See Wonder
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:silgoi_68470

Resolution on the U.S. Exploring Expedition

Subject:
United States Exploring Expedition (USEE)  Search this
Physical description:
Number of Images: 1; Color: Black and white; Size: 8w x 11h; Type of Image: Object ; Medium: Document
Type:
Photographic print
Document
Public Law
Date:
1845
Topic:
Publications  Search this
Standard number:
SIA2011-2254
Restrictions & Rights:
No restrictions
Data Source:
Smithsonian Archives - History Div
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sic_12786

Throwing Club, "Iula"

Donor Name:
United States Exploring Expedition  Search this
Lt. Charles Wilkes  Search this
Collector:
United States Exploring Expedition  Search this
Length:
38.3cm
Diameter, Minimum:
2.5cm
Diameter, Maximum:
9.8cm
Culture:
Fijian  Search this
Object Type:
Club
Place:
Fiji, Melanesia
Accession Date:
1858
Collection Date:
1838
Topic:
Ethnology  Search this
Accession Number:
66A00050
USNM Number:
E3144-0
See more items in:
Anthropology
Data Source:
NMNH - Anthropology Dept.
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhanthropology_8390315
Additional Online Media:

Fishing Net

Donor Name:
United States Exploring Expedition  Search this
Lt. Charles Wilkes  Search this
Collector:
United States Exploring Expedition  Search this
Length:
140cm
Width:
69.2cm
Culture:
Fijian  Search this
Object Type:
Net
Place:
Fiji, Melanesia
Accession Date:
1858
Collection Date:
1838
Topic:
Ethnology  Search this
Accession Number:
66A00050
USNM Number:
E2831-0
See more items in:
Anthropology
Data Source:
NMNH - Anthropology Dept.
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhanthropology_8383212
Additional Online Media:

Bark Cloth, Turban

Donor Name:
United States Exploring Expedition  Search this
Lt. Charles Wilkes  Search this
Culture:
Fijian  Search this
Object Type:
Turban
Place:
Fiji, Melanesia
Accession Date:
1858
Collection Date:
1838
Topic:
Ethnology  Search this
Accession Number:
66A00050
USNM Number:
E4475-0
See more items in:
Anthropology
Data Source:
NMNH - Anthropology Dept.
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhanthropology_8463834
Additional Online Media:

Bow And Arrows

Donor Name:
United States Exploring Expedition  Search this
Lt. Charles Wilkes  Search this
Collector:
United States Exploring Expedition  Search this
Length:
176cm
119cm
Width:
2.5cm
1cm
Culture:
Fijian  Search this
Object Type:
Bow / Arrow
Place:
Fiji, Melanesia
Accession Date:
1858
Collection Date:
1838
Topic:
Ethnology  Search this
Accession Number:
66A00050
USNM Number:
E4900-0
See more items in:
Anthropology
Data Source:
NMNH - Anthropology Dept.
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhanthropology_8467529
Additional Online Media:

Fine Tapa 2 Pieces, Turbans

Donor Name:
United States Exploring Expedition  Search this
Lt. Charles Wilkes  Search this
Object Type:
Turban
Place:
Fiji, Melanesia
Accession Date:
1858
Collection Date:
1838
Topic:
Ethnology  Search this
Accession Number:
66A00050
USNM Number:
E9222-0
See more items in:
Anthropology
Data Source:
NMNH - Anthropology Dept.
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhanthropology_8487201
Additional Online Media:

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