Skip to main content Smithsonian Institution

Search Results

Collections Search Center
11746 documents - page 1 of 500Result pages are truncated to 500.

Ch. 24 Pest and Disease Control Aaron J. Ihde

Collection Creator:
Kranzberg, Melvin, Dr., 1917-1995  Search this
Container:
Box 310, Folder 6
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Restrictions:
Collection is open for research. Collection stored off-site. Contact repository for details.
Collection Rights:
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Collection Citation:
Melvin Kranzberg Papers, 1934-1988, Archives Center, National Museum of American History.
See more items in:
Melvin Kranzberg Papers
Melvin Kranzberg Papers / Series 6: Publications / 6.6: Technology in Western Civilization
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-nmah-ac-0266-ref4371

Listen to the Recreated Voice of a 3,000-Year-Old Egyptian Mummy

Creator:
Smithsonian Magazine  Search this
Type:
Blog posts
Smithsonian staff publications
Blog posts
Published Date:
Fri, 24 Jan 2020 17:30:54 +0000
Topic:
Custom RSS  Search this
See more posts:
Smithsonian Article Database
Data Source:
Smithsonian Magazine
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:posts_ff63f71833e479dc9380864536c08f68

Oral history interview with Lyle Ashton Harris, 2017 March 27-29

Interviewee:
Harris, Lyle Ashton, 1965-  Search this
Interviewer:
Fialho, Alex, 1989-  Search this
Subject:
Carby, Hazel V.  Search this
Watson, Simon  Search this
Wilson, Millie  Search this
O'Meally, Robert G.  Search this
Basquiat, Jean-Michel  Search this
O'Dench, Ellen  Search this
Baker, Houston A.  Search this
Seeley, J.  Search this
O'Meally, Jackie  Search this
Hemphill, Essex  Search this
Collier, Jim  Search this
González-Torres, Félix  Search this
Barton, Nancy  Search this
Tate, Greg  Search this
Geer, Tommy  Search this
Goldin, Nan  Search this
Mays, Vickie M.  Search this
Gates, Henry Louis  Search this
Julien, Isaac  Search this
Gray, Todd  Search this
Lord, Catherine  Search this
Grayson, John  Search this
Butler, Cornelia H.  Search this
Woodman, Francesca  Search this
Mapplethorpe, Robert  Search this
Tilton, Jack  Search this
Sekula, Allan  Search this
Riggs, Marlon T.  Search this
Whitney Museum of American Art  Search this
American Academy in Rome  Search this
California Institute of the Arts  Search this
Visual Arts and the AIDS Epidemic: An Oral History Project  Search this
Wesleyan University (Middletown, Conn.)  Search this
Type:
Interviews
Sound recordings
Topic:
Photography  Search this
Gay artists  Search this
Netherlands  Search this
England  Search this
Performance artists  Search this
Video artists  Search this
AIDS (Disease) and art  Search this
African American artists  Search this
Tanzania  Search this
Racism  Search this
Photographers  Search this
Ghana  Search this
Art  Search this
New York (N.Y.)  Search this
AIDS activists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)17456
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)387759
AAA_collcode_harris17
Theme:
African American
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_387759
Additional Online Media:

Oral history interview with Jim Hodges, 2017 March 9-May 25

Interviewee:
Hodges, Jim, 1957-  Search this
Interviewer:
Carr, C.  Search this
Subject:
González-Torres, Félix  Search this
Fuller, Marnie  Search this
Chatham, Rhys  Search this
Nyzio, David  Search this
Montano, Linda  Search this
Smith, Scott  Search this
Kaiser, Karen  Search this
Arning, Bill  Search this
Feher, Tony  Search this
Reynolds, Hunter  Search this
Morris, Bob  Search this
McCarty, Lynn  Search this
Hoffman, Nancy  Search this
Vallenciano, Robert  Search this
Safranek, Doug  Search this
Nechvatal, Joseph  Search this
Pratt Institute  Search this
Visual Arts and the AIDS Epidemic: An Oral History Project  Search this
Fort Wright College of the Holy Names  Search this
Type:
Interviews
Sound recordings
Topic:
Artists  Search this
Gay artists  Search this
Installations (Art)  Search this
AIDS (Disease)  Search this
Mixed media (Art)  Search this
Art  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)17480
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)388916
AAA_collcode_hodges17
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_388916
Additional Online Media:

Oral history interview with Julie Ault, 2017 November 14-16

Interviewee:
Ault, Julie, 1957-  Search this
Interviewer:
Kerr, Theodore, 1979-  Search this
Subject:
Miller-Keller, Andrea  Search this
Nelson, Marybeth  Search this
Beck, Martin  Search this
Szypula, Peter  Search this
McCarty, Marlene  Search this
González-Torres, Félix  Search this
Serrano, Andres  Search this
Moffett, Donald  Search this
Pasternak, Anne  Search this
Klein, Jochen  Search this
Evans, Steven  Search this
Meyer, Richard  Search this
Brennan, Patrick  Search this
Locks, Sabrina  Search this
Rollins, Tim  Search this
Maharaj, Sarat (Sarat Chandra),  Search this
Blake, Nayland  Search this
Kalin, Tom  Search this
Olander, William  Search this
Staniszewski, Mary Anne  Search this
Ashford, Doug  Search this
Sandqvist, Gertrud  Search this
Ramspacher, Karen  Search this
Wright, Charles  Search this
Hawkins, Yolanda  Search this
Alderfer, Hannah  Search this
Lindell, John  Search this
Alexander, Vikky  Search this
Rinder, Lawrence  Search this
McLaughlin, Mundy  Search this
Garrels, Gary  Search this
Phillips, Lisa  Search this
Wagner, Frank  Search this
Tucker, Marcia  Search this
National Endowment for the Arts  Search this
Visual Arts and the AIDS Epidemic: An Oral History Project  Search this
Group Material (Firm : New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Type:
Interviews
Sound recordings
Topic:
Washington (D.C.)  Search this
AIDS (Disease) and the arts  Search this
Oral history  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Curators  Search this
Political activists  Search this
Art  Search this
New York (N.Y.)  Search this
AIDS (Disease)  Search this
Authors  Search this
History  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)17523
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)391129
AAA_collcode_ault17
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_391129
Additional Online Media:

Figure of Tanzi

Medium:
Jade
Dimensions:
H x W x D: 10.1 x 4.8 x 2.5 cm (4 x 1 7/8 x 1 in)
Type:
Jade
Sculpture
Origin:
China
Date:
14th-17th centuries
Period:
Ming dynasty
Topic:
Ming dynasty (1368 - 1644)  Search this
China  Search this
Chinese Art  Search this
Tanzi  Search this
WWII-era provenance  Search this
Credit Line:
Gift of Arthur M. Sackler
Accession Number:
S1987.759
Restrictions & Rights:
Copyright with museum
Related Online Resources:
Google Cultural Institute
See more items in:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Collection
Data Source:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:fsg_S1987.759

Folio from a Aja'ib al-makhluqat (Wonders of Creation) by al-Qazvini

Author:
Muhammad al-Qazvini (ca. 1203-1283)  Search this
Medium:
Opaque watercolor, ink and gold on paper
Dimensions:
H x W (recto ram): 7.8 × 11.6 cm (3 1/16 × 4 9/16 in)
Type:
Manuscript
Origin:
Iraq or Eastern Turkey
Date:
early 15th century
Topic:
bull  Search this
crab  Search this
naskh script  Search this
astrology  Search this
Turkey  Search this
Iraq  Search this
Aries  Search this
Cancer  Search this
Gemini  Search this
Taurus  Search this
Wonders of Creation  Search this
Arts of the Islamic World  Search this
zodiac  Search this
WWII-era provenance  Search this
ram  Search this
Credit Line:
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Accession Number:
F1954.43
Restrictions & Rights:
Copyright with museum
Related Online Resources:
Google Cultural Institute
See more items in:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Collection
Data Source:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:fsg_F1954.43
Additional Online Media:

Folio from a Aja'ib al-makhluqat (Wonders of Creation) by al-Qazvini

Author:
Muhammad al-Qazvini (ca. 1203-1283)  Search this
Medium:
Opaque watercolor, ink, gold and silver on paper
Dimensions:
H x W (recto fish): 6 × 14.1 cm (2 3/8 × 5 9/16 in)
Type:
Manuscript
Origin:
Iraq or Eastern Turkey
Date:
early 15th century
Topic:
fish  Search this
naskh script  Search this
Turkey  Search this
Iraq  Search this
Piscis Austrinus  Search this
Cancer  Search this
Pleiades  Search this
Wonders of Creation  Search this
Arts of the Islamic World  Search this
WWII-era provenance  Search this
Credit Line:
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Accession Number:
F1954.49
Restrictions & Rights:
Copyright with museum
Related Online Resources:
Google Cultural Institute
See more items in:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Collection
Data Source:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:fsg_F1954.49
Additional Online Media:

Folio from Kitab fi ma'arifat al-hiyal al-handisaya (The book of knowledge of ingenious mechanical devices) Automata by al-Jazari (d. 1206); recto: text, Water-powered clocks; verso: The face of a water clock with Zodiac signs

Calligrapher:
Farruq ibn Abd al-Latif  Search this
Medium:
Ink, opaque watercolor and gold on paper
Dimensions:
H x W: 31.5 x 21.9 cm (12 3/8 x 8 5/8 in)
Type:
Manuscript
Origin:
probably Syria
Date:
1315 (715 A.H.)
Period:
Mamluk period
Topic:
Mamluk period (1250 - 1517)  Search this
Syria  Search this
Aries  Search this
Cancer  Search this
Capricorn  Search this
Gemini  Search this
Leo  Search this
Pisces  Search this
Sagittarius  Search this
Scorpio  Search this
Taurus  Search this
Libra  Search this
Virgo  Search this
Aquarius  Search this
automata  Search this
Arts of the Islamic World  Search this
zodiac  Search this
Credit Line:
Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment
Accession Number:
F1930.74
Restrictions & Rights:
Copyright with museum
Related Online Resources:
Google Cultural Institute
See more items in:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Collection
Data Source:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:fsg_F1930.74
Additional Online Media:

Suwaru-l-kawakib (Description of the Fixed Stars) by 'Abd al-Rahman al-Sufi (incomplete)

Medium:
Ink on paper
Dimensions:
H x W: 23.9 x 14.4 cm (9 7/16 x 5 11/16 in)
Type:
Manuscript
Origin:
Probably Iran
Date:
16th century
Period:
Safavid period
Topic:
fish  Search this
bull  Search this
Safavid period (1501 - 1722)  Search this
astronomy  Search this
crab  Search this
naskh script  Search this
Iran  Search this
Andromeda  Search this
Aquila  Search this
Argo Navis  Search this
Canis Major  Search this
Canis Minor  Search this
Cassiopeia  Search this
Centaurus  Search this
Corona Austrina  Search this
Corvus  Search this
Crater  Search this
Delphinus  Search this
Equuleus  Search this
Lepus  Search this
Ophiuchus  Search this
Orion  Search this
Pegasus  Search this
Perseus  Search this
Piscis Austrinus  Search this
Sagitta  Search this
Triangulum  Search this
Aries  Search this
Cancer  Search this
Capricorn  Search this
Gemini  Search this
Leo  Search this
Pisces  Search this
Sagittarius  Search this
Scorpio  Search this
Taurus  Search this
Libra  Search this
Virgo  Search this
Aquarius  Search this
virgin  Search this
globe  Search this
Arts of the Islamic World  Search this
zodiac  Search this
ram  Search this
Credit Line:
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Accession Number:
F1907.626
Restrictions & Rights:
Copyright with museum
Related Online Resources:
Google Cultural Institute
See more items in:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Collection
Data Source:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:fsg_F1907.626
Additional Online Media:

Charm against diseases

Medium:
Ink on paper
Dimensions:
H x W: 38.8 x 4.2 cm (15 1/4 x 1 5/8 in)
Type:
Manuscript
Origin:
Genizah, Egypt
Date:
11th-12th century
Period:
Fatimid period
Topic:
Fatimid period (909 - 1171)  Search this
Egypt  Search this
Arts of the Islamic World  Search this
Credit Line:
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Accession Number:
F1908.44x
Restrictions & Rights:
Copyright with museum
Related Online Resources:
Google Cultural Institute
See more items in:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Collection
Data Source:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:fsg_F1908.44x
Additional Online Media:

Star Mandala

Medium:
Color and gold on silk
Dimensions:
H x W (overall): 119.4 x 71.2 cm (47 x 28 1/16 in)
Type:
Painting
Origin:
Japan
Date:
1615-1868
Period:
Edo period
Topic:
Buddhism  Search this
Edo period (1615 - 1868)  Search this
mandala  Search this
Japan  Search this
throne  Search this
Aries  Search this
Cancer  Search this
Capricorn  Search this
Gemini  Search this
Leo  Search this
Pisces  Search this
Sagittarius  Search this
Scorpio  Search this
Taurus  Search this
Libra  Search this
Virgo  Search this
Aquarius  Search this
dharmachakra  Search this
dhyana mudra  Search this
kakemono  Search this
Japanese Art  Search this
zodiac  Search this
Credit Line:
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Accession Number:
F1904.389a-c
Restrictions & Rights:
Copyright with museum
Related Online Resources:
Google Cultural Institute
See more items in:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Collection
Data Source:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:fsg_F1904.389a-c

United States Department of Agriculture photographs relating to a sugar expedition to New Guinea

Creator:
United States. Department of Agriculture  Search this
Names:
National Geographic Society (U.S.)  Search this
Photographer:
Brandes, E. W. (Elmer Walker)), b. 1891  Search this
Hurley, Frank, 1885-1962  Search this
Jeswiet, Jacob  Search this
Kirschbaum, Father  Search this
Peck, R. K.  Search this
Wisherd, Edwin L.  Search this
Extent:
2 acetate negatives
3 nitrate negatives
100 Prints (ca. 100 prints: silver gelatin)
120 Prints (ca. 120 glass negatives)
Culture:
Negritos  Search this
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Acetate negatives
Nitrate negatives
Prints
Photographs
Place:
Papua New Guinea
Date:
1928-1929
Scope and Contents note:
Images of settlements, people (including Negritos), artifacts, agriculture (especially sugarcane), headdresses, tattooing and body marking, members of the expedition, and the expedition's plane. This collection contains photographs by every member of the expedition. Other images are from Frank Hurley's documentary, "Pearls and Savages", or were made by the Department of Agriculture at installations where sugarcane was grown. Finally, many photographs of specimens and people working with specimens were taken by National Geographic after the expedition had returned to the United States.
Biographical/Historical note:
Most of the photographs were made during the 1928 Sugar Expedition to the Territories of Papua and New Guinea organized by the United States Department of Agriculture. The expedition traveled to places in the eastern half of New Guinea. Its primary purpose was to collect living samples of various sugarcane plants to be used for developing disease-resistant strains for the American grower. The expedition was led by E. W. Brandes and included R. K. Peck, Jacob Jeswiet, and, at times, a priest named Kirschbam. The expedition visited native settlements in the vicintiy of Port Moresby, along the upper Fly River and Lake Marray, on the Sepik River, and in northeastern New Guinea. During the expedition, photographs were made for the National Geographic Society and specimens were collected for the Smithsonian Institution.
Local Call Number(s):
NAA Photo Lot 91-8
Location of Other Archival Materials:
The Human Studies Film Archives holds Frank Hurley's "Pearls and Savages" (HSFA 89.1.1) and the Department of Agriculture's "Sugar Plant Hunting by Airplane in New Guinea" (HSFA 82.7.1).
Photographs of New Guinea artifacts collected by Brandes also held in National Anthropological Archives Photo Lot 97.
New Guinea artifacts collected by Brandes held in the Department of Anthropology in USNM ACC 106509.
Additional photographs by Edwin L. Wisherd held in the National Anthropological Archives in the Neil Merton Judd Papers.
Restrictions:
The collection is open for research.

Access to the collection requires an appointment.
Rights:
National Geographic photographs cannot be copied without permission of the National Geographic Society.
Topic:
Body marking  Search this
Cities and towns  Search this
headgear  Search this
Sugarcane  Search this
Agriculture  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Citation:
Photo lot 91-8, United States Department of Agriculture photographs relating to a sugar expedition to New Guinea, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution
Identifier:
NAA.PhotoLot.91-8
Archival Repository:
National Anthropological Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-naa-photolot-91-8
Additional Online Media:

Records of the Field Offices for the State of Alabama, Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, 1865–1872

Extent:
34 Reels
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Reels
Date:
1865–1872
Summary:
This collection is comprised of digital surrogates previously available on the 34 rolls of microfilm described in the NARA publication M1900. These digital surrogates reproduced the records of the Alabama Office of the Assistant Commissioner, his staff offices, and subordinate field offices of the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, 1865–1872. These records consist of bound volumes and unbound records, containing materials that include letters and endorsements sent and received, monthly reports, applications of freedmen for rations, and other records relating to freedmen's claims and homesteads.
Records Description:
The volumes reproduced in this microfilm publication were originally arranged by type of record and thereunder by volume number. No numbers were assigned to series consisting of single volumes. Years later, all volumes were arbitrarily assigned numbers by the Adjutant General's Office (AGO) of the War Department after the records came into its custody. In this microfilm publication, AGO numbers are shown in parentheses to aid in identifying the volumes. The National Archives assigned the volume numbers that are not in parentheses. In some volumes, particularly in indexes and alphabetical headings of registers, there are a number of blank numbered pages that have not been filmed.

The volumes consist of letters and endorsements sent and received, press copies of letters sent, registers of letters received, fair copies of letters received, letters and orders received, registers of freedmen issued rations, special orders and circulars issued, registers of bounty claimants, reports, registers of contracts, registers of complaints, registers of patients, registers of disbursements, account books, miscellaneous records, and monthly reports forwarded to the Assistant Commissioner. The unbound documents consist of letters sent and received and endorsements sent, reports, applications for relief, labor contracts, rosters of officers and employees, court records, special and general orders and circulars received, and miscellaneous records. The unbound records also contain monthly reports; oaths of office; applications of freedmen for rations; and records relating to claims, court trials, property restoration, and homesteads.

From June 1866 to January 1868, Assistant Commissioner Swayne also served as the military commander of Alabama. He therefore created and received records in both capacities. The dual function of the Assistant Commissioner resulted in a succession of changes in the official headings used on correspondence and issuances. The title "Office of the Assistant Commissioner" was changed in June 1866 to "Headquarters, District of Alabama," and in August 1866 to "Headquarters, Subdistrict of Alabama." The heading "District of Alabama" was used again from March 1867 until superseded by "State of Alabama" in February 1868. The dual function of the office is also reflected in the recordkeeping practices for that period. Although the Assistant Commissioner generally maintained separate records for each of his capacities, in the case of letters and endorsements sent the records were frequently combined. Wherever they were separable, the records created by the Assistant Commissioner in his military capacity were placed with the Records of United States Army Continental Commands, 1821–1920, RG 393.
Historical Note:
[The following is reproduced from the original NARA descriptive pamphlet for M1900.]

HISTORY AND ORGANIZATION

The Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, also known as the Freedmen's Bureau, was established in the War Department by an act of Congress on March 3, 1865 (13 Stat. 507). The life of the Bureau was extended twice by acts of July 16, 1866 (14 Stat. 173), and July 6, 1868 (15 Stat. 83). The Bureau was responsible for the supervision and management of all matters relating to refugees and freedmen, and of lands abandoned or seized during the Civil War. In May 1865, President Andrew Johnson appointed Maj. Gen. Oliver Otis Howard as Commissioner of the Bureau, and Howard served in that position until June 30, 1872, when activities of the Bureau were terminated in accordance with an act of June 10, 1872 (17 Stat. 366). While a major part of the Bureau's early activities involved the supervision of abandoned and confiscated property, its mission was to provide relief and help freedmen become self–sufficient. Bureau officials issued rations and clothing, operated hospitals and refugee camps, and supervised labor contracts. In addition, the Bureau managed apprenticeship disputes and complaints, assisted benevolent societies in the establishment of schools, helped freedmen in legalizing marriages entered into during slavery, and provided transportation to refugees and freedmen who were attempting to reunite with their family or relocate to other parts of the country. The Bureau also helped black soldiers, sailors, and their heirs collect bounty claims, pensions, and back pay.

The act of March 3, 1865, authorized the appointment of Assistant Commissioners to aid the Commissioner in supervising the work of the Bureau in the former Confederate states, the border states, and the District of Columbia. In Alabama, operations began in July 1865 when Brig. Gen. Wager Swayne took command as Assistant Commissioner. Bvt. Brig. Julius Hayden succeeded Swayne and served from January to March 1868. Col. Oliver L. Shepherd served from March to August 1868, and Col. T. H. Ruger held the position of Assistant Commissioner for only a few days in August before the arrival of Bvt. Lt. Col. Edwin Beecher later in that month. In January 1869, in accordance with an act of July 25, 1868 (15 Stat. 193), Bureau operations in Alabama were terminated except for the educational functions and the collection of claims. Colonel Beecher remained in Alabama as superintendent of education and held that position until the office was closed in July 1870. The majority of Bureau officers and agents in Alabama were active duty military officers, and for the first two years of the Bureau's existence in Alabama, the agency doubled as the military command for the district. Brig. Gen. Swayne, for example, served as Assistant Commissioner and District Military Commander for Alabama from 1866 to 1868. As a consequence of the wide use of military officers to staff the Bureau, the agency constantly struggled with issues of continuity as well as a lack of personnel to staff the various field offices. At one point at the end of 1866, the Bureau could only staff eight stations in Alabama due to a critical shortage of qualified personnel.

While the work performed by Assistant Commissioners in each state was similar, the organizational structure of staff officers varied from state to state. At various times, the staff could consist of a superintendent of education, an assistant adjutant general, an assistant inspector general, a disbursing officer, a chief medical officer, a chief quartermaster, and a commissary of subsistence. Subordinate to these officers were the assistant superintendents, or subassistant commissioners as they later became known, who commanded the subdistricts. The major subordinate field offices for the Bureau at Alabama included headquarters at Demopolis, Eufaula, Garland, Greenville, Huntsville, Mobile, Montgomery, Opelika, Selma, Talladega, Tuscaloosa, and Tuskegee. Under the direct supervision of the subassistant commissioners were the civilian and military agents. Occasionally, the Bureau retained military officers in a civilian capacity after the termination of their military service. For a list of known Alabama subordinate field office personnel and their dates of service, see the Appendix.

The Assistant Commissioner corresponded extensively with both his superior in the Washington Bureau headquarters and his subordinate officers in the subdistricts. Based upon reports submitted to him by the subassistant commissioners and other subordinate staff officers, he prepared reports that he sent to the Commissioner concerning Bureau activities in areas under his jurisdiction. The Assistant Commissioner also received letters from freedmen, local white citizens, state officials, and other non–Bureau personnel. These letters varied in nature from complaints to applications for jobs in the Bureau. Because the assistant adjutant general handled much of the mail for the Assistant Commissioner's office, it was often addressed to him instead of to the Assistant Commissioner.

In a circular issued by Commissioner Howard in July 1865, the Assistant Commissioners were instructed to designate one officer in each state to serve as "General Superintendents of Schools." These officials were to "take cognizance of all that is being done to educate refugees and freedmen, secure proper protection to schools and teachers, promote method and efficiency, correspond with the benevolent agencies which are supplying his field, and aid the Assistant Commissioner in making his required reports." In October 1865, a degree of centralized control was established over Bureau educational activities in the states when Rev. John W. Alvord was appointed Inspector of Finances and Schools. In January 1867, Alvord was divested of his financial responsibilities, and he was appointed General Superintendent of Education.

An act of Congress, approved July 25, 1868 (15 Stat. 193), ordered that the Commissioner of the Bureau "shall, on the first day of January next, cause the said bureau to be withdrawn from the several States within which said bureau has acted and its operation shall be discontinued." Consequently, in early 1869, with the exception of the superintendents of education and the claims agents, the Assistant Commissioners and their subordinate officers were withdrawn from the states.

For the next year and a half, the Bureau continued to pursue its education work and to process claims. In the summer of 1870, the superintendents of education were withdrawn from the states, and the headquarters staff was greatly reduced. From that time until the Bureau was abolished by an act of Congress approved June 10, 1872 (17 Stat. 366), effective June 30, 1872, the Bureau's functions related almost exclusively to the disposition of claims. The Bureau's records and remaining functions were then transferred to the Freedmen's Branch in the office of the Adjutant General. The records of this branch are among the Bureau's files.

Constrained by limited resources, Southern opposition, and the politics of Reconstruction, the Bureau faced an enormous challenge in its efforts to assist the freedmen and refugees. Its relief efforts, without question, saved thousands of southerners from starvation. Its attempts to assist freedmen to become self–sufficient, to provide public education, administer justice, and, to a lesser degree, to provide land, all worked with varying degrees of success to lessen the difficulties during the transition from slavery to freedom. One of the Bureau's greatest legacies is the body of records it created and received during the course of its operations. These records are arguably some of the most important documents available for the study of the Federal Government's policies, efforts to reconstruct the South, and Southern social history and genealogy.

THE FREEDMEN'S BUREAU IN ALABAMA

The Freedmen's Bureau's major activities in Alabama generally resembled those conducted in other states. The Bureau issued rations to both freedmen and white refugees, supervised labor contracts between planters and freedmen, administered justice, worked with benevolent societies in the establishment of schools, and assisted freedmen in locating land.

Shortly after accepting the position of Assistant Commissioner in Alabama, Brig. Gen. Swayne requested permission from the Freedmen's Bureau headquarters in Washington, DC, to set aside 1,225 acres of land on the Broward Plantation near Montgomery for freedmen. The plantation had been abandoned shortly before the end of the war and was confiscated by Federal authorities. Montgomery Home Colony, established on some of this land, became the largest of several "home colonies" set aside to provide services for the freedmen. Home colonies were also established at Talladega, Mobile, Garland, Butler County, Montgomery, Selma, Demopolis, and Huntsville. The colonies were not self–sufficient communities of freedmen like those found in South Carolina or Louisiana. Instead, the colonies were distribution centers where the Bureau disseminated rations, clothes, seeds, and tools; processed claims; provided medical care; and organized services for the infirm, orphans, and the elderly. The central functions of these colonies were organized around a freedmen's hospital. The freedmen's hospital at Montgomery offered services to all races. From November 1866 to August 1867, it treated 168 refugees (whites), five of whom died. During the same period, the hospital treated 6,058 freedmen, of whom 162 died.

From 1865 to 1867, Alabama suffered repeated and massive crop failures due to drought or frost conditions. During the same period, the state was swept by a series of epidemics, with smallpox proving the most deadly disease affecting the freedmen. In addition to medical care, one of the most important duties for the Bureau in Alabama was the issuance of rations to refugees and freedmen to stave off malnutrition and starvation.

The Alabama Bureau also expended great resources and energy mitigating contract disputes between freedmen and white landowners as well as attempting to overturn draconian "black codes" enacted by the Alabama State Legislature and signed by the Governor. In his 1866 annual report to the Washington, DC, headquarters of the Bureau, Swayne complained that white landowners rampantly defrauded freedmen of benefits spelled out in their labor contracts.1 However, Swayne complained most extensively in this report about a particular set of "black codes" passed by the Legislature late in 1865 as vagrancy laws. These codes were passed shortly before Christmas after widespread complaints by white landowners that freedmen refused to work during the Christmas week. Apparently, freedmen expected to continue the tradition of time off from work at Christmas dating back to the antebellum years. Brig. Gen. Swayne charged that these laws returned freedmen to a state of slavery. First, he pointed to the authorized use of chain gangs in which freedmen worked with no compensation for even the most minor offenses. Second, the newly established probate courts often worked against freedmen. They were responsible for settling contract disputes between freedmen and white landowners. However, one component of the law passed by the Legislature stipulated that freedmen were not allowed to testify against whites or serve on juries. In cases where the courts found in favor of the white landowners, the presiding judge had the option of forcing freedmen into uncompensated labor for the white landowners or impressing freedmen's children as free laborers for the litigant. The black codes also authorized county officials to impress orphaned children as laborers on local plantations. Swayne was able to convince the Alabama Legislature to eventually overturn most of these codes. In districts where he could not force the probate courts to fairly enforce the law, he set up special freedmen's courts to hear complaints.

However, Swayne was unable to convince the Legislature to overturn provisions of the vagrancy laws that allowed widespread arrests of freedmen. The code authorized local and state law enforcement officials to summarily arrest those freedmen without contract papers who were allegedly causing "disturbances" in public places and roads. The normal punishment under this penal code was forced labor on nearby plantations. Finally, in March 1867, the Bureau saw this law overturned through the Military Reconstruction Bill for the District of Alabama (14 Stat. 429).

The Freedmen's Bureau in Alabama had a major impact in providing education for freedmen from 1866 to 1869. Due to its limited budget and resources, the Bureau was unable to directly establish and operate the great number of freedmen schools needed. However, the successive Assistant Commissioners proved very adept at finding other means for establishing these schools. They successfully implemented a three–way partnership program in which a wide variety of Northern relief societies flooded the state with resources to build schools, money for books and teachers, or volunteer members who instructed the freedmen for no fee. The freedmen were often responsible for actual maintenance of facilities as well as contributions of money and resources for upkeep of the local schools. Bureau agents oversaw the education program and provided land and protection for the schools. The results of this program were impressive. At the beginning of the school year in October 1866, there were 3,100 freedmen in classes taught by 68 teachers. By June 1867, these figures had grown to just under 10,000 students instructed by 150 teachers.

ENDNOTES

1 Annual Report of the Assistant Commissioner, Montgomery, AL, October 31, 1866, Records of the Assistant Commissioner for the State of Alabama, Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, 1865–1870 (National Archives Microfilm Publication M809, Roll 2), Records of the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, Record Group (RG) 105, National Archives Building, Washington, DC.
Freedmen's Bureau Personnel in Alabama:
This list provides the names and dates of service of known Freedmen's Bureau personnel at selected subordinate field offices in Alabama. Additional information regarding persons assigned to various field offices might be found among the Bureau's Washington headquarters station books and rosters of military officers and civilians on duty in the states and other appointment–related records.

DEMOPOLIS

Aug.–Dec. 1865 -- Subassistant Commissioner Capt. A. C. Haltonstall

Jan. 1866–Feb. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner Bvt Maj. C. W. Pierce

Feb.–May 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner Lt. A. J. Bennett

June 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner C. L. Drake

July–Dec. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner R. A. Wilson

GREENVILLE

Sept.–Nov. 1865 -- Subassistant Commissioner A. L. Brown

Nov. 1865–ca. June 1866 -- Subassistant Commissioner T. W. Mostyn

ca. June 1866–Feb. 1867 -- Subassistant Commissioner J. F. McGogy

Feb.–June 1867 -- Subassistant Commissioner Samuel Gardner

June–Sept. 1867 -- Subassistant Commissioner William H. Peck

Sept.–Nov. 1867 -- Subassistant Commissioner Samuel Gardner

Nov.–Dec. 1867 -- Subassistant Commissioner J. A. Hart

Dec. 1867–July 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner Samuel Gardner

Aug.–Dec. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner J. F. McGogy

HUNTSVILLE

Sept. 1865–Jan. 1866 -- Subassistant Commissioner T. M. Goodfellow

Jan. 1866–Jan. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner J. B. Callis

Jan.–Feb. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner Robert Harrison

Mar.–Nov. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner D. C. Rugg

HUNTSVILLE AND ATHENS

Apr.–Sept. 1868 -- Claims Agent J. W. Wilis

Sept. 1868–Jan. 1872 -- Claims Agent John Wager

JACKSONVILLE

May–Aug. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner and Agent Robert Harrison

Aug. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner and Agent William McKibbin (Agent)

MOBILE

Apr.–Aug. 1865 -- Subassistant Commissioner George Harmount

Oct. 1865–Apr. 1866 -- Subassistant Commissioner George Robinson

Apr.–May 1866 -- Subassistant Commissioner G. A. Washbum

May–Aug. 1866 -- Subassistant Commissioner L. J. Whiting

Sept.–Oct. 1866 -- Subassistant Commissioner Joseph Logan

Nov. 1866–Sept. 1867 -- Subassistant Commissioner George Tracy

Sept. 1867–Aug. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner James Gillette

Aug.–Sept. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner John Hyde

Sept.–Nov. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner E. H. Weirman

Nov.–Dec. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner Frank Towle

MONTGOMERY

Oct. 1865–Dec. 1866 -- Subassistant Commissioner George A. Harmount

Dec. 1866–Aug. 1867 -- Subassistant Commissioner L. J. Whiting

Aug. 1867–Dec. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner J. C. Hendrix

OPELIKA

June 1867–June 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner R. T. Smith

July–Aug. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner John Bannister

Aug.–Sept. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner D. B. Smith

Sept.–Oct. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner G. W. Kingsbury

Oct.–Dec. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner D. B. Smith

SELMA

Mar.–June 1866 -- Subassistant Commissioner Samuel S. Gardner

June–July 1866 -- Subassistant Commissioner F. D. Ogilby

July–Aug. 1866 -- Subassistant Commissioner Samuel S. Gardner

Aug. 1866–Jan. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner George Shorkley

Jan.–Dec. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner Charles C. Bartlett

TALLADEGA

Oct.–Nov. 1865 -- Subassistant Commissioner D. P. Cilley

Dec. 1865–Apr. 1866 -- Subassistant Commissioner T. Humphrey

Apr. 1866–Feb. 1867 -- Subassistant Commissioner R. Tlieune

Feb. 1867–June 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner J. F. McGogy

June–Dec. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner George P. Sherwood

TUSCALOOSA

Jan.–Apr. 1866 -- Subassistant Commissioner Jesse W. Cogswell

Apr. 1866–Apr. 1867 -- Subassistant Commissioner W. H. Peck

Apr. 1867–Dec. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner Robert Blair

TUSCUMBIA

May–June 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner Henry Sweeney

June–Aug. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner W. H. Heilman

Aug. 1868 -- Subassistant Commissioner John Raines

TUSKEGEE

Sept.–Nov. 1865 -- Assistant Superintendent Andrew Geddes

Nov. 1865–Apr. 1866 -- Assistant Superintendent Spencer Smith
Related Materials:
See also Freedmen's Bureau Digital Collection
Provenance:
Acquired from FamilySearch International in 2015.
Restrictions:
Freedmen's Bureau Digital Collection, 1865–1872, is a product of and owned by the National Museum of African American History and Culture, Smithsonian Institution. Copyright for digital images is retained by the donor, FamilySearch International; permission for commercial use of the digital images may be requested from FamilySearch International, Intellectual Property Office, at: cor-intellectualproperty@ldschurch.org.
Topic:
American South  Search this
Freedmen's Bureau  Search this
Reconstruction, U.S. history, 1865-1877  Search this
Slaves -- Emancipation  Search this
Citation:
Courtesy of the U. S. National Archives and Records Administration, FamilySearch International, and the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture.
Identifier:
NMAAHC.FB.M1900
See more items in:
Records of the Field Offices for the State of Alabama, Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, 1865–1872
Archival Repository:
National Museum of African American History and Culture
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmaahc-fb-m1900
Additional Online Media:

Field in Focus: Flying Foxes

Creator:
National Zoo  Search this
Type:
Youtube videos
Uploaded:
2018-10-25T19:07:07.000Z
Topic:
Zoology;Animals;Veterinary medicine;Animal health  Search this
Youtube Category:
Pets & Animals  Search this
See more by:
SmithsonianNZP
YouTube Channel:
SmithsonianNZP
Data Source:
National Zoo
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_0pyHjeuLOLQ

National Zoo Gorillas are the First to Participate in Heart Disease Study

Creator:
National Zoo  Search this
Type:
Youtube videos
Uploaded:
2012-04-02T20:25:41.000Z
Topic:
Zoology;Animals;Veterinary medicine;Animal health  Search this
Youtube Category:
Pets & Animals  Search this
See more by:
SmithsonianNZP
YouTube Channel:
SmithsonianNZP
Data Source:
National Zoo
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_9KVTpz3eIns

Ecosystems on the Edge: Low Oxygen

Creator:
Smithsonian Environmental Research Center  Search this
Type:
Youtube videos
Uploaded:
2013-07-01T13:41:22.000Z
Topic:
Animal health;Environmental Sciences;Coastal ecology  Search this
Youtube Category:
Science & Technology  Search this
See more by:
SmithsonianSERC
YouTube Channel:
SmithsonianSERC
Data Source:
Smithsonian Environmental Research Center
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_Bxh-Mlup0PY

Field in Focus: Kawgun Cave

Creator:
National Zoo  Search this
Type:
Youtube videos
Uploaded:
2018-10-25T19:07:08.000Z
Topic:
Zoology;Animals;Veterinary medicine;Animal health  Search this
Youtube Category:
Pets & Animals  Search this
See more by:
SmithsonianNZP
YouTube Channel:
SmithsonianNZP
Data Source:
National Zoo
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_F2MuDmxg8zo

National Zoo Lioness Naba Welcomes Lion Cubs

Creator:
National Zoo  Search this
Type:
Youtube videos
Uploaded:
2014-01-27T15:12:00.000Z
Topic:
Zoology;Animals;Veterinary medicine;Animal health  Search this
Youtube Category:
Science & Technology  Search this
See more by:
SmithsonianNZP
YouTube Channel:
SmithsonianNZP
Data Source:
National Zoo
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_GPVxwaGtN1Q

Smithsonian & Partners Pioneer Method to Boost Endangered Coral Populations

Creator:
National Zoo  Search this
Type:
Youtube videos
Uploaded:
2018-12-12T19:28:07.000Z
Topic:
Zoology;Animals;Veterinary medicine;Animal health  Search this
Youtube Category:
Pets & Animals  Search this
See more by:
SmithsonianNZP
YouTube Channel:
SmithsonianNZP
Data Source:
National Zoo
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:yt_HzVntzq-L94

Modify Your Search






or


Narrow By