University of Florida. Department of Anthropology Search this
42.27 Linear feet (85.5 document boxes, 1 oversize box, 4 record storage boxes, 90 computer disks, 19 cassette tapes, 1 7" sound reel, 3 vinyl records, and 1 map folder)
Boxes 88-91 (formerly designated off-site boxes 1-4) are stored off-site. Advanced notice must be given to view these materials.
New York (N.Y.)
Rio de Contas (Brazil)
This collection contains the professional papers of anthropologist Marvin Harris. Harris was a prominent anthropologist, best known for developing the controversial paradigm of cultural materialism. He authored several important books in the field of anthropology and taught at Columbia University and The University of Florida. The papers include correspondence, research materials, his publications, unpublished manuscripts, conference papers, lectures, subject files, teaching files, computer files, and photographs.
Scope and Contents:
This collection contains the professional papers of anthropologist Marvin Harris. The papers include correspondence, research materials, his publications, unpublished manuscripts, conference papers, lectures, subject files, teaching files, computer files, and photographs.
His research files document his ethnographic field work in Rio de Contas, Brazil, both for his dissertation and his racial categorization project; his research on forced labor in Mozambique; his videotape study in New York City households; and his India sacred cattle research. The collection also contains his research on food preferences and aversions, his files as a research consultant for the McKinsey Global Institute, and photos from his field work in Chimborazo, Ecuador and Arembepe, Brazil.
Over the course of his career, Harris also participated in several conferences and invited lectures. The collection contains some of the papers he presented as well as audio recordings of his lecture "Levi-Strauss and the Clam: An Open and Shut Case" and a recording of a radio interview. Also present in the collection are materials relating to conference sessions and symposiums that he organized, including the 1967 AAA session on Anthropology and War and his 1983 Wenner-Gren symposium on Food Preferences and Aversions.
Additional materials that may be of interest are materials documenting Harris' activism in the 1960s at Columbia University, which include his anti-Vietnam War activities, as well as his involvement in the student protests of 1968 at Columbia University. The collection also contains Harris' CIA, FBI, and Department of State records that he obtained through Freedom of Information Act requests, photographs from Harris' service in the army in the 1940s, and photos taken in Brazil by Pierre Verger.
Harris corresponded with several prominent anthropologists, many of whom were Latin American specialists. Some of his noteworthy correspondents include Napoleon Chagnon, Derek Freeman, Morton Fried, Conrad Kottak, Sidney Mintz, Anthony Leeds, Claude Levi-Strauss, Darcy Ribeiro, Anisio Teixeira, Charles Wagley, and Karl Wittfogel. Also of special interest is his correspondence with leading figures in the Mozambique and Portuguese liberation movements, including Antonio Figuereido, Eduardo Mondlane, and General Humberto Delgado.
Please note that the contents of the collection and the language and terminology used reflect the context and culture of the time of its creation. As an historical document, its contents may be at odds with contemporary views and terminology and considered offensive today. The information within this collection does not reflect the views of the Smithsonian Institution or National Anthropological Archives, but is available in its original form to facilitate research.
This collection is arranged in 10 series: (1) Correspondence, 1952-2001; (2) Research, 1949-1997; (3) Writings, 1955-2001; (4) Professional Activities, 1960-1999; (5) Name Subject Files, 1951-2001; (6) University, 1947-1999; (7) Biographical Files, 1954-1999; (8) Writings by Other People, 1961-2000; (9) Photographs, 1945-1996; (10) Computer Files, 1980-2000
Marvin Harris was a prominent anthropologist, best known for developing the controversial paradigm of cultural materialism. He authored several important books in the field of anthropology, most notably The Rise of Anthropological Theory (1968) and Cultural Materialism (1979) as well as books that reached a wider audience, such as Cows, Pigs, Wars and Witches (1974) and Cannibals and Kings (1977).
Harris was born in Brooklyn, New York on August 18, 1927. After serving in the U.S. Army Transportation Corps (1945-47), he received his B.A. (1948) and Ph.D. (1953) from Columbia University. His first anthropology course was taught by Charles Wagley, who was influential in Harris' decision to become an anthropologist. Harris joined the faculty at Columbia University after earning his doctorate and served as chair of the Department of Anthropology from 1963 to 1966. In 1980, he left Columbia for a position as Graduate Research Professor at University of Florida, where he stayed until his retirement in 2000.
It was in The Rise of Anthropological Theory that Harris coined the phrase "cultural materialism," a subject he further elaborated on in Cultural Materialism. Cultural materialism, Harris explains, is a scientific research strategy "based on the simple premise that human social life is a response to the practical problems of earthly existence" (1979, xv). Harris applied the paradigm to explain various cultural patterns, such as food preferences and taboos, changes in U.S. family structure, and the collapse of Soviet and East European state socialism. One of his most controversial theories was that the Hindu prohibition of slaughtering and consuming cows in India arose because it was more economically beneficial to use cattle as draft animals than as meat. He challenged Napoleon Chagnon's views that Yanomami men were inherently more aggressive and violent by explaining that it was the pursuit of animal protein that was the cause of Yanomami warfare. Harris similarly argued that protein deficiency was the reason why the Aztecs practiced cannibalism.
Harris presented his theories beyond academic circles to a general audience by contributing a monthly column to Natural History Magazine. He also authored several popular books. In addition to Cows, Pigs, Wars and Witches and Cannibals and Kings, Harris also wrote America Now (1981), Good to Eat (1985), and Our Kind (1989). Harris also authored and edited several editions of two college-level introductory textbooks: Culture, People, Nature (first published as Culture, Man, and Nature in 1971) and Cultural Anthropology (first published in 1983, later editions coauthored with Orna Johnson). According to Harris, the 1975 edition of Culture, People, Nature "was the first anthropology textbook to be written cover to cover in a gender-neutral mode of discourse" (12/3/93 letter from Harris to Deborah S. Rubin, "Furlow - [The Teaching of Anthropology]", Series 3. Writings, Marvin Harris Papers).
Although Harris is primarily known for his work as a theoretician, he also conducted ethnographic fieldwork throughout his career. Harris traveled to Rio de Contas, Brazil in 1950-51 to conduct research for his dissertation, "Minas Velhas: A Study of Urbanism in the Mountains of Eastern Brazil." This research was also the subject of his book Town and Country in Brazil (1958) and his chapter, "Race Relations in Minas Velhas, a Community in the Mountain Region of Central Brazil" in Race and Class in Rural Brazil (Charles Wagley, 1952). He continued his research in Brazil in 1953-54 while serving as a research advisor for the Ministry of Education in Rio de Janeiro. As field leader of the Columbia-Cornell-Harvard-Illinois Summer Field Studies Program, Harris returned to Brazil in 1962 to study fishing villages in Arembepe. Prior to that, he also served as field leader for the program in Chimborazo, Ecuador in 1960.
In 1956-57, Harris conducted field research in Mozambique, at the time under Portuguese rule. He initially intended to study the influence of Portuguese rule on race relations, comparing the race relations in Brazil and Mozambique. He soon became aware, however, of the political brutalities that the Portuguese government was imposing on the people of Mozambique. Consequently, Harris decided to focus his research on labor exploitation in the colony. Antonio de Figueiredo, who later became an important figure in the Mozambique liberation movement, served as an informal assistant to Harris. Harris was also friends with Eduardo Mondlane, president of FRELIMO, the Mozambican Liberation Front. Because Harris was openly critical of the Portuguese government, he was forced to leave Mozambique before he completed his research. When he returned to the United States, Harris published Portugal's African "Wards" (1958), a critical evaluation of Portugal's colonialism. His publication was influential in eradicating the forced labor system in Mozambique a few years later.
Harris' activism extended to the social and political unrest at home during the 1960s. He was vice-chairman of Vietnam Facts, an organization of professors in the United States who were against the Vietnam War, and was one of the organizers of the Ad Hoc Teaching Committee on Vietnam. In 1967, he brought an academic focus to war by organizing a symposium on the subject with Morton Fried and Robert Murphy at the American Anthropological Association's (AAA) annual meeting. Together, they edited War: The Anthropology of Armed Conflict and Aggression (1968), a compilation of the papers presented at the conference. During the 1968 student uprising at Columbia University, Harris was one of the few faculty members that openly sided with the students. Harris criticized the actions of the university administrators in his article, "Big Busts on Morningside Heights" (1968).
Due to his experiences in Mozambique, Harris also began to think about the distinctions between emic and etic perspectives, which he discusses in his book, The Nature of Cultural Things (1964). During the 1960s-70s, Harris experimented with the use of video recordings as an etic approach to collecting ethnographic data. He collaborated with the Bronx State Hospital to videotape domestic life in two Puerto Rican and two African American families. He also videotaped and coded behavioral streams of two Caucasian and two African-American families in New York City for his NSF funded project, "Patterns of Authority and Subordination in Low-Income Urban Domiciles." In 1965 and 1992, Harris returned to Brazil to study racial categorizations and identifications, specifically the emic and etic differences in the perception of race. He published several papers on the subject, including "The Structural Significance of Brazilian Racial Categories" (1963), "Referential Ambiguity in the Calculus of Brazilian Racial Identity" (1970), and "Who are the Whites?" (1993).
During the 1980s, Harris was troubled by the rising popularity of postmodernist theory within anthropology. He believed that anthropology was a science and was concerned about the harmful consequences of postmodernist theory to the field. He organized a AAA session on postmodernism called "Anti-anti Science" in 1989 and participated in multiple conference sessions on the subject, including a 1993 session on "The Objectivity Crisis: Rethinking the Role of Science" at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) meeting. "Anthropology and Postmodernism," a revised version of his AAAS paper was published as a chapter in Science, Materialism, and the Study of Culture (Martin F. Murphey and Maxine L. Margolis, 1995). Harris also criticized postmodernist theory in his final book, Theories of Culture in Postmodern Times (1999).
While Harris thought that postmodernism was moving anthropology further away from science, behavior scientists began to see the relevancy of cultural materialism in their own research. In 1986, Harris was invited to give an address at the annual conference of the Association for Behavioral Analysis (ABA). His paper was titled, "Cultural Materialism and Behavior Analysis: Common Problems and Radical Solutions." He also participated in a symposium on "The Integration of Cultural Materialism and Behavior Analysis" at the 1991 ABA annual meeting.
From 1988-90, Harris served as president of the General Anthropology Division of AAA. In 1991, he was given the honor of presenting the Distinguished Lecture at the AAA annual meeting. His talk was titled, "Anthropology and the Theoretical and Paradigmatic Significance of the Collapse of Soviet and East European Communism." That same year, The Rise of Anthropological Theory was designated a Social Science Citation Classic.
Harris died at the age of 74 on October 25, 2001.
Margoline, Maxine L. and Conrad Phillip Kottak. "Marvin Harris (1927-2001)." American Anthropologist. 105(3) (2003): 685-688.
Curriculum Vitae. Series 7. Biographical Files. Marvin Harris papers, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution.
Harris, Marvin. "Cultural Materialism is Alive and Well and Won't Go Away Until Something Better Comes Along." In Assessing Anthropology,edited by Robert Borofsky, 62-76. New York: McGraw Hill, 1994.
1927 -- Born August 18 in Brooklyn, New York
1945-1947 -- Served in U.S. Army Transportation Corps
1948 -- B.A. from Columbia College
1950-1951 -- Field research in Brazil
1953 -- Ph.D. in Anthropology from Columbia University Field research in Brazil
1953-1954 -- Research Advisor, National Institute of Pedagogical Studies, Rio de Janeiro. Brazilian Ministry of Education
1953-1959 -- Assistant Professor, Department of Anthropology, Columbia University
1956-1957 -- Field research in Mozambique
1959-1963 -- Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology, Columbia University
1960 -- Field leader of Columbia-Cornell-Harvard-Illinois Summer Field Studies Program in Chimborazo, Ecuador
1962 -- Field leader of Columbia-Cornell-Harvard-Illinois Summer Field Studies Program in Arembepe, Bahia, Brazil. NSF
1963-1980 -- Professor, Department of Anthropology, Columbia University
1963-1966 -- Chair, Department of Anthropology, Columbia University
1965 -- Field Research in Brazil
1965-1972 -- Video Tape Methodology and Etic Ethnography
1969-1974 -- Principle Investigator, Videotape Studies of Urban Domiciles
1968-1969 -- Visiting Distinguished Professor, Central Washington State College
1976 -- Field Research in India
1980-2000 -- Graduate Research Professor, Department of Anthropology, University of Florida
1983-1984 -- Consultant, United Nations Fund for Population Activities
1984 -- McMurrin Professor, University of Utah, Fall
1991-1992 -- Consultant, McKinsey and Company Global Institute
1991 -- Presented AAA Distinguished Lecture, "Anthropology and the Theoretical and Paradigmatic Significance of the Collapse of Soviet and East European Communism" The Rise of Anthropological Theory designated Social Science Citation Classic
1992 -- Field Research in Brazil
2001 -- Died October 25
1952 -- Harris, Marvin. "Race Relations in Minas Velhas." In Race and Class in Rural Brazil, edited by Charles Wagley, 51-55. Paris: UNESCO, 1952.
1956 -- Harris, Marvin. Town and Country in Brazil. New York: Columbia University Press, 1956.
1958 -- Harris, Marvin, and Charles Wagley. Minorities in the New World. New York: Columbia University, 1958. Harris, Marvin. Portugal's African "Wards". New York: The American Committee on Africa, 1958.
1959 -- Harris, Marvin. "The Economy Has No Surplus?" American Anthropologist 51 (1959): 189-199. Harris, Marvin. "Labor Emigration Among the Mozambique Thonga: Cultural and Political Factors." Africa 29 (1959): 50-56.
1963 -- Harris, Marvin, and Conrad Kottack. "The Structural Significance of Brazilian Racial Categories." Sociologia 25 (1963): 203-209.
1964 -- Harris, Marvin. "Racial Identity in Brazil." Luso-Brazilian Review 1 (1964): 21-28. Harris, Marvin. The Nature of Cultural Things. New York: Random House, 1964. Harris, Marvin. Patterns of Race in the Americas. New York: Walker and Company, 1964.
1965 -- Harris, Marvin. "The Myth of the Sacred Cow." In Man, Culture and Animals, edited by A. Vayda and A. Leeds, 217-228. Washington: American Association for the Advancement of Science, 1965.
1966 -- Harris, Marvin. "The Cultural Ecology of India's Sacred Cattle." Current Anthropology 7 (1966): 51-66. Harris, Marvin, and George Morren. "The Limitations of the Principle of Limited Possibilities." American Anthropologist 58 (1966): 122-127.
1967 -- Harris, Marvin, Morton Fried, and Robert Murphy, eds. "The Anthropology of War and Aggression." Special Supplement, Natural History (December 1967): 30-70.
1968 -- Harris, Marvin. "Big Bust on Morningside Heights." The Nation 206 (1968): 757-763. Harris, Marvin. The Rise of Anthropological Theory. New York: Thomas Y. Crowell, 1968. Harris, Marvin, Morton Fried, and Robert Murphy, eds. War: The Anthropology of Armed Conflict and Aggression. New York: Natural History Press, 1968.
1970 -- Harris, Marvin. "Referential Ambiguity in the Calculus of Brazilian Racial Identity." Southwestern Journal of Anthropology 26 (1970): 1-14.
1971 -- Harris, Marvin. Culture, Man and Nature: An Introduction to General Anthropology. New York: Thomas Y. Crowell, 1971.
1974 -- Harris, Marvin. Cows, Pigs, Wars and Witches: The Riddles of Culture. New York: Random House, 1974.
1976 -- Harris, Marvin, and William Divale. "Population, Warfare, and the Male Supremacist Complex." American Anthropologist 78 (1976): 521-538.
1977 -- Harris, Marvin. Cannibals and Kings: The Origins of Cultures. New York: Random House, 1977.
1979 -- Harris, Marvin. Cultural Materialism: The Struggle for a Science of Culture. New York: Random House, 1979.
1981 -- Harris, Marvin. America Now: The Anthropology of a Changing Culture. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1981.
1982 -- Harris, Marvin, A. Vaidynathan, and K.N. Nair. "Bovine Sex and Species Ratios in India." Current Anthropology 23 (1982): 365-383.
1983 -- Harris, Marvin. Cultural Anthropology. New York: Harper and Row, 1983.
1984 -- Harris, Marvin. "Animal Capture and Yanomamo Warfare: Retrospect and New Evidence." Journal of Anthropological Research 40 (1984): 183-201.
1985 -- Harris, Marvin. Good to Eat: Riddles of Food and Culture. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1985.
1987 -- Harris, Marvin. "Cultural Materialism: Alarums and Excursions." In Waymarks: The Notre Dame Inaugural Lectures in Anthropology, edited by Kenneth Morre, 107-126. Notre Dame: Notre Dame Press, 1987. Harris, Marvin, and Eric Ross, eds. Food and Evolution: Toward a Theory of Human Food Habits. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1987. Harris, Marvin, and Eric Ross. Death, Sex and Fertility: Population Regulation in Preindustrial and Developing Societies. New York: Columbia University Press, 1987.
1988 -- Harris, Marvin. Why Nothing Works: The Anthropology of Daily Life. New York: Touchstone, 1988.
1989 -- Harris, Marvin. Our Kind: Who We Are, Where We Came From, and Where We're Going. New York: Harper and Row, 1989.
1991 -- Harris, Marvin. "Anthropology: Ships that Crash in the Night." In Perspectives on Social Science: The Colorado Lectures, edited by Richard Jessor, 70-114. Boulder, CO.: Westview, 1991. Harris, Marvin, Thomas Headland, and Kenneth Pike, eds. Emics and Etics: The Insider/Outsider Debate. Newbury Park, CA: Sage, 1991. Harris, Marvin. "The Evolution of Human Gender Hierarchies: A Trial Formulation." In Sex and Gender Hierarchies, edited by Barbara Miller, 57-79. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1991.
1992 -- Harris, Marvin. "Distinguished Lecture: Anthropology and the Theoretical and Paradigmatic Significance of the collapse of Soviet and East European Communism." American Anthropologist 94 (1992): 295-305.
1993 -- Harris, Marvin, Josildeth Gomes Consorte, Joseph Lang, and Bryan Byrne. "Who are the White? Imposed Census Categories and the Racial Demography of Brazil." Social Forces 72 (1993): 451-462.
1994 -- Harris, Marvin. "Cultural Materialism is Alive and Well and Won't Go Away Until Something Better Comes Along." In Assessing Anthropology, edited by Robert Borofsky, 62-76. New York: McGraw Hill, 1994.
1995 -- Harris, Marvin. "Anthropology and Postmodernism." In Science, Materialism, and the Study of Culture, edited by Martin Murphy and Maxine Margolis, 62-77. Gainsville, FL: University Press of Florida, 1995.
1999 -- Harris, Marvin. Theories of Culture in Postmodern Times. Walnut Creek, CA: AltaMira Press, 1999.
More of Marvin Harris' correspondence can be found in the papers of William Duncan Strong. Researchers may also want to consult the Human Studies Film Archives, which holds video oral histories of Charles Wagley (HSFA 89.10.5) and Lambros Comitas (HSFA 89.10.20), both of whom discuss Harris in their interviews.
An open reel video from the collection was transferred to the Human Studies Film Archives (HSFA 2011.10.1). The video relates to Series 2: Research; Sub-series 2.6: Videotape Research--"[Macy's Santa Claus study]"
The papers of Marvin Harris were donated to the National Anthropological Archives by his daughter, Susan Harris.
Access to student records (consisting of graded materials and student recommendation letters), grant proposals sent to Harris for review by grant agencies, and part of his faculty recruitment files are restricted until 2081. Series 10. Computer Files are also restricted due to preservation concerns.
United States of America -- Ohio -- Summit County -- Akron
Also known as the Frank A. Seiberling House.
Postcard circa 1915-1930.
Access to original images by appointment only. Researcher must submit request for appointment in writing. Certain items may be restricted and not available to researchers. Please direct reference inquiries to the Archives of American Gardens: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Archives of American Gardens encourages the use of its archival materials for non-commercial, educational and personal use under the fair use provision of U.S. copyright law. Use or copyright restrictions may exist. It is incumbent upon the researcher to ascertain copyright status and assume responsibility for usage. All requests for duplication and use must be submitted in writing and approved by Archives of American Gardens.
The papers of Woodstock area painter, muralist, and designer, Anton Refregier (1905-1979) date from circa 1900 to circa 1990 and measure 35.9 linear feet. The collection records Refregier's early commercial work and murals for the Works Progress Adminstration (WPA) and documents his career through to the 1970s with records of commissions for many public and private buildings, exhibitions in the United States and abroad, teaching positions, essays and publications, and extensive travel, particularly to the Soviet Union and Mexico. The collection contains scattered biographical material, personal and business correspondence, notes and writings, 15 diaries and journals, mural and tapestry files, exhibition files, personal business records, printed material, 10 scrapbooks, artwork including sketches and cartoons for murals, and photographs of Refregier, his friends, family and travels.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of Woodstock area painter, muralist, and designer, Anton Refregier (1905-1979) date from circa 1900 to circa 1990 and measure 35.9 linear feet. The collection records Refregier's early commercial work and murals for the Works Progress Adminstration (WPA) and documents his career through to the 1970s with records of commissions for many public and private buildings, exhibitions in the United States and abroad, teaching positions, essays and publications, and extensive travel, particularly to the Soviet Union and Mexico. The collection contains scattered biographical material, personal and business correspondence, notes and writings, diaries and journals, mural and tapestry files, exhibition files, personal business records, printed material, scrapbooks, artwork including sketches and cartoons for murals, and photographs of Refregier, his friends, family and travels.
Biographical material contains legal records such as Refregier's will and marriage and death records, passports, resume material and 2 interview transcripts.
Correspondence, both chronological and alphabetical, constitutes almost a third of the collection and documents all aspects of Refregier's career including his work for the WPA, private commissions, representation by ACA Galleries, his involvement with groups such as the Woodstock Artists Association and his teaching work for institutions such as Bard College. Also documented are his involvement with local political groups and international organizations such as the National Council of American-Soviet Friendship and the World Peace Council, and travels including visits to the Soviet Union. Notable correspondents include Henry Dreyfuss, Philip Evergood, Rockwell Kent, Emmy-Lou Packard, and Byron Randall. Correspondence also includes family letters written primarily by Refregier to Lila Refregier, in addition to greeting cards received by the Refregier family, many of which contain original arwork.
Writings are primarily by Refregier and include drafts of many essays and autobiographical writings, in addition to copies of published works including Natural Figure Drawing, An Artists Journey and Sketches of the Soviet Union.
The collection contains diaries and journals from 12 years in various formats including published and handmade day planners and typed and handwritten journal entries. They include sketches and primarily record travel and daily activities including specific projects such as the New York World's Fair mural (1938-1939).
Mural and Tapestry files document individual commissions bid on and/or completed by Refregier. The creation of the Rincon Annex Post Office mural and subsequent controversies over its subject matter are well-documented here, as are many of Refregier's commissions for banks, hospitals, hotels, shopping centers, and schools.
Exhibition files document at least 15 of Refregier's exhibitions, including his first one-man show at ACA Galleries (1942) and his exhibition of paintings at the Hermitage Museum (1967) in what was then Leningrad.
Personal business records contain addresses of contacts. Scattered records referencing market values for Refregier's work can be found throughout the series in records such as bills and receipts, financial notes and tax records.
Printed material provides extensive coverage of Refregier's entire career through announcements, invitations, catalogs, and news clippings. His interests in art, literature, music, theater and politics are also well-represented in these files.
The collection contains 10 scrapbooks, mostly in fragmented condition, which contain a mixture of photographs, sketches and other artwork, notes and fragments of writings, and printed material. The scrapbooks document a variety of subjects including Refregier's family life, travels to Guatemala and the Soviet Union, and the artist at work.
Artwork consists primarily of artwork by Refregier in the form of mural design sketches and cartoons in various media, including pencil, ink and pastel, in addition to 21 sketchbooks, many of which also contain journal entries and notes. Also found here are prints and reproductions of Refregier's "Peace card" block engravings for every year from 1950-1973, with the exception of 1970.
Photographs document all phases of Refregier's career and include family photographs dating from circa 1900, photos of Refregier in the studio including work for the WPA, Refregier and other artists and individuals at events and parties from the 1940s-1970s, travel snapshots probably taken in Chile, Guatemala, Mexico, and the Soviet Union, and photographs of artwork and installations. Individuals pictured include Julio de Diego, Marion Greenwood, Rockwell Kent, Pablo O'Higgins and David Siqueiros; also, a series of press photographs by Albert A. Freeman pictures Refregier with Howard Fast, Norman Bel Geddes, Marion Greenwood, John Kingsbury, Yasuo Kuniyoshi and Harry Stockwell. One photograph by Eliot Elisofon, 2 by Eugene Morley and 4 by Max Yavno can also be found here.
The collection is arranged as 11 series:
Series 1: Biographical Material, 1925-1980 (Box 1; 0.25 linear ft.)
Series 2: Correspondence, 1912-circa 1990s (Boxes 1-11, 36, OVs 38, 45; 10.2 linear ft.)
Series 3: Writings, circa 1930s-circa 1970s (Boxes 11-14, OV 45; 3.3 linear ft.)
Series 4: Diaries and Journals, 1923-1979 (Box 15; 0.6 linear ft.)
Series 5: Mural and Tapestry Files, circa 1930s-circa 1970s (Boxes 15-18, 36, OVs 38, 45, 46, RD 42; 3.65 linear ft.)
Series 6: Exhibition Files, 1942-1981 (Boxes 18-19; 0.6 linear ft.)
Series 7: Personal Business Records, 1920s-1980s (Boxes 19-20; 1.8 linear ft.)
Series 8: Printed Material, circa 1920s-1980s (Boxes 21-28, 36; 7.4 linear ft.)
Series 9: Scrapbooks, 1930s-1960s (Boxes 28, 37, BV 47; 1.1 linear ft.)
Series 10: Artwork, circa 1930s-circa 1970s (Boxes 28-30, 36, OVs 40, 41, RDs 42-44; 3.5 linear ft.)
Series 11: Photographic Material, ca. 1900-1980s (Boxes 31-35, 39; 4.5 linear ft.)
Russian-born Woodstock painter Anton Refregier (1905-1979) immigrated to the United States in 1920. Refregier was well-known for his sometimes controversial social realist murals for the WPA.
After an apprenticeship to the sculptor, Vasilief, in Paris, Anton Refregier attended the Rhode Island School of Design from 1920-1925 and studied with Hans Hofmann in Germany in 1927. He had his first one-man show at ACA Galleries in New York City in 1942 and settled in Woodstock, New York, with his wife, Lila, and three children Anton, Jr., Brigit and Aleksandre, where he became a prominent member of the artist community.
Refregier completed several social realist murals for the federal Works Progress Adminstration (WPA) program, including one at the New York Worlds Fair in 1939 and the controversial Rincon Annex Post Office mural in San Francisco begun in 1941. He also completed interior design installations for businesses such as the nightclub, Cafe Society Uptown, and the restaurant, The Cookery, in New York City. In addition to being an easel and mural painter Refregier worked in tapestry, mosaic, ceramic, and collage, and completed many commissions for hotels, banks, hospitals, restaurants, synagogues, supermarkets and deparment stores throughout the country.
Refregier taught at various institutions including Stanford University, the University of Arkansas, and Bard College and his publications inlcude Natural Figure Drawing (1948), An Artist's Journey (1965), and Sketches of the Soviet Union (1978). He traveled regularly to the Soviet Union to explore and exchange ideas about art and culture and as a representative of the World Peace Council.
Anton Refregier died in Moscow in October 1979 while visiting the Soviet Union. His work can be found in many museums including the Corcoran Gallery of Art, the Metropolitan Museum, the San Francisco Museum of Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art.
Also found in the Archives of American Art are an oral history interview with Anton Refregier, 1964, Nov. 5 by Joseph Trovato; and Papers regarding Anton Refregier mural controversy, 1953.
Donated 1983 by Lila Refregier, widow of Anton Refregier, and in 1992 by Brigit R. Sutton, Refregier's daughter.
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
The Anton Refregier papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. They may be used for research, study and scholarship. Authorization to quote or reproduce for purposes of publication must be obtained from: Brigit R. Sutton, Box 344D, Woodstock, New York, 12498.
Papers of Uriah A. Boyden (1804-1879), a Boston civil and mechanical engineer and the inventor of the Boyden turbine. Materials include correspondence, notes, calculations, articles, notebooks, legal documents, financial documents, patents and patent assignments, design drawings, newspaper clippings, pamphlets, business cards, and a print of a daguerreotype.
Scope and Content:
This collection documents the activities of Uriah Atherton Boyden (1804-1879), a Boston civil and mechanical engineer. The papers cover the span of Boyden's life, but the bulk of the papers date from between 1830 and 1879. The materials relate to his professional engineering life, including his work as an engineer for the Nashua and Lowell Railroad Corporation and his work with turbines at New England mills and manufacturing companies. The collection also contains papers that illustrate his scientific interests, including sound, meteorology, chemistry, and physics. Materials include correspondence, notes, calculations, articles, notebooks, legal documents, financial documents, patents and patent assignments, design drawings, newspaper clippings, pamphlets, business cards, and a print of a daguerreotype.
Series 1, Correspondence, 1823-1879, consists of three subseries: Subseries 1, Outgoing Correspondence, 1830-1879; Subseries 2, Incoming Correspondence, 1823-1879; and Subseries 3, Miscellaneous Correspondence, 1825-1879. The bulk of the series is comprised of letters, although some telegrams are included. The majority of Boyden's letters discuss his business dealings and scientific interests, but some correspondence is related to family matters. Family correspondents include his brothers Seth Boyden (1788-1870), William Pitts Boyden, Otis Boyden, Benjamin F. Boyden, and Alexander Boyden (1791-1881); his sisters Sarah Boyden (d. 1834) and Sabra Smith; and his parents Seth (1764-1840) and Susanna Boyden. He also corresponded with his niece Susan Boyden Burnet and sister-in-law Abigail Boyden. Subjects discussed include Seth Boyden's illness, death, and will in 1840 and Sarah Boyden's death in 1834.
Correspondence from the 1830s discusses the construction of the dry dock at the Charlestown Navy Yard, Massachusetts; experiments conducted at the Boston and Roxbury Mill Dam; Boyden's work as Chief Engineer for the Nashua and Lowell Railroad Corporation and his subsequent lawsuit against the Nashua and Lowell Railroad Corporation over a pay dispute; the employment of assistants; and the construction of a mill at the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company.
Frequent correspondents include William Livingston, who was deposed in Boyden's lawsuit of the Nashua and Lowell Railroad Company; F. George Stark of Amoskeag Village; John Jacques of Worcester, Massachusetts; R. Read of Amoskeag Manufacuring Company; and Ezekial Albert Straw (1819-1882), a civil engineer and agent for the Amoskeag Manufacuring Company and the governor of New Hampshire from 1872-1874. Correspondence from the 1840s is primarily about turbines. Subjects include the development of the Boyden Turbine at the Lowell Appleton Company and Boyden's patents (US Patents 5,068, 5,090, 5,114, 10,026, and 10,027).
Other topics include the Merrimack Manufacturing Company's new mill; the Stark Company's turbine; turbine pits for the Merrimack Company's Picking House; Boyden's design for a turbine built at the Lowell Machine Shop and used at Tilestons & Hollingsworth Upper Mill; and requests for books. During this period, Boyden sent letters to various manufacturing companies and mills, informing them he would be willing to sell his patent rights for turbine improvements and provide plans and specifications, although he would not oversee the construction of turbines. Recipients of these letters include hydraulic engineer James B. Francis, P. T. Jackson, treasurer of the Proprietors of Locks and Canals; T. G. Cary, treasurer of the Appleton Company; John Avery, agent of the Hamilton Manufacturing Company; Alexander Wright, agent of the Lowell Manufacturing Company; Charles T. Storrow, treasurer of the Essex Company and the Atlantic Cotton Mills; R. Read, agent of the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company; Amos A. Lawrence, treasurer of Salmon Falls Manufacturing Company; John Mixer, treasurer of the Suncook Manufacturing Company; and William Dwight, treasurer of the Saco Water Power Company.
Letters relating to the Atlantic Cotton Mills turbine design, testing, and lawsuit comprise a portion of the correspondence from the late 1840s and 1850s. Other correspondence from the 1850s includes letters to and from Boyden's employee Norman W. Stearns, who traveled to California and Australia; discussion of the testing of a turbine at the Hamilton Manufacturing Company Mills at Lowell; an extract from a report on the power derived from the tides at the Boston and Roxbury Mill Dam; a letter from the Smithsonian Institution encouraging Boyden to publish his research on turbines; and the difficulties with turbine experiments at the Nashua Manufacturing Company's mills. Boyden continued to offer his patent rights to various companies, including James T. Ames, agent of the Ames Manufacturing Company, and Ezekial Albert Straw, agent of the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company.
Some letters were written by assistant Edward Sawyer on behalf of Uriah Boyden. Letters from the 1860s include Boyden's correspondence with the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia concerning the prize he created for any resident of North America who could determine by experiment whether all rays of light are transmitted at the same velocity. Common subjects include turbines; physics; Henri Giffard's invention of the injector; an apparatus for atmospheric electrical experiments; expanding gas; and the purchase of chemical substances.
There are many letters to the Bailliere Brothers, importers of periodicals; and E. G. Wallis, the Assistant Assessor of the third district of Boston for taxes. In 1862, Boyden wrote a letter to Massachusetts Governor John A. Andrew offering a letter of recommendation for hydraulic engineer James B. Francis. Boyden also paid for a lecture in 1862 given by George Boutwell on liberating some Southern slaves. Letters from the 1870s discuss a variety of topics, including patents, the New England Glass Company, and the purchase of books. Finally, a folder of miscellaneous materials includes several letters of recommendation and introduction for Boyden, and a few letters neither to nor from Boyden.
Series 2, Notes on Turbines, 1833-1870, contains primarily Boyden's notes and calculations relating to the design, development, construction, and testing of turbines. There are also drawings of turbines, excerpts from scholarly journals about turbines, and the manuscript article about turbines for American Cabinet authored by Boyden. A published copy of this article is located in Series 10, Printed Material, 1835-1879. Some materials are in French.
A large portion of the papers are the calculations and results of experiments on Turbine No. 3 of the Atlantic Cotton Mills. More information on these experiments can be found in the Series 5, Notebooks, 1819-1867, and Series 6, Lawsuits, 1836-1864. Experiments conducted at the Appleton Company, where Boyden developed the Boyden turbine, appear in this series.
The turbine notes also contain measurements and computations for turbines for the Chicopee Manufacturing Company; designs and calculations for the Tileston and Hollingsworth's turbine in Dorchester, Massachusetts; an estimate for installing turbines for the Jackson Company; and a report to the Boston Water Power Company on the estimate of power from the Boston and Roxbury Mill Dam. Boyden was assisted in his calculations and experiments by Maximilian L. G. Wilde, Edward Sawyer, [Neil?], W. Mertz, David Dows, and James Emerson. The series contains an oversize miscellaneous folder comprised of calculations and tables.
Series 3, Subject Files, circa 1827-1875, contains groups of papers that Boyden assembled into packets and numbered and labeled with topical categories. The papers cover a wide range of topics. A large portion of the materials are excerpts or notes from published sources, although some packets contain Boyden's own calculations, tables, and surveys. Some materials are in French, German, and Greek and some have been translated from French and German into English.
One subject Boyden explores in depth is tobacco, including the tobacco trade, taxes on tobacco, consumption statistics from the United States and Europe, different varieties of plants, and tobacco's effect on health, including whether or not it contributes to mental illness. In addition, he discusses alcohol's effect on health; whether crime is connected with drinking alcohol, liquor licensing laws, and the option of prohibition in Massachusetts. He was also interested in the early history of the Bible, including how it was translated from the original Hebrew and how Egyptian connects to Old Testament history. Boyden compares different religious practices, including Islam, Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, and ancient Greek and Egyptian religion.
Boyden collected a great deal of information from census data in the United States and Great Britain. In the Boston area, he looks at the number of births among Irish immigrants compared to native born Americans, and in particular explores whether tobacco use increases or decreases births among Irish immigrants. He also utilizes population statistics to discuss mental illness in both Europe and the United States. Like Series 4, Notes and Papers, 1806-1879, the Subject Files contain statistics on the cause of and response to fires in Boston.
Finally, the Subject Files include information on a variety of scientific subjects. For instance, a portion of materials discuss hydraulic lime, atomic theory and molecules, chemistry, thermoelectricity, meteorology, astronomy, batteries, and water pressure through pipes. Boyden quotes from Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species in his explorations of natural history. Several packets are comprised of surveys of property lots in Brookline, Massachusetts and the Longwood area of Boston. Sources Boyden utilized include publications such as the Encyclopaedia Britannica, the Bible, the New York Herald, The Boston Daily Advertiser, L'Annales des Ponts et Chaussées (The Annals of the Department of Civil Engineering), Brockhaus's Encyclopaedia, Annals of Chemistry and Pharmacy, Les Comptes Rendus de l'Académie des Sciences (The Proceedings of the French Academy of Sciences), Annales de Chimie et de Physique (Annals of Chemistry and Physics), Annales d'Hygiène (Annals of Hygiene), Appleton's Cyclopaedia, Hunt's Merchant's Magazine, Esquirol's Treatise on Mental Maladies, The London Times, and Poggendorff's Annals. The packets also contain call slips from the Boston Athenaeum and the Boston Public Library.
Series 4, Notes and Papers, 1806-1879, consists of a wide range of material. Some papers are in French and German, or translated from published French and German into English. The series encompasses notes from Boyden's scientific experiments and observations. One subject Boyden studied indepth was meteorology, and the series contains weather observations, recordings of temperature and air pressure, and eyewitness accounts of unusual weather.
In addition, Boyden conducted experiments on the effect of a dam in the Merrimack River, the specific heat of steam, electricity, the effects of rays on bisulphide of carbon, glass making, and oils. Five notebooks document experiments on the chemical combination of oxygen with liquids at atmospheric temperatures. Furthermore, the series contains information on sound experiments made at Chelsea, Massachusetts, and at the Charlestown, Massachusetts aqueduct, which are also discussed in Series 5, Notebooks, 1819-1867, and Series 9, Drawings, circa 1835-1872. Boyden conducted surveys of various industrial projects, including the Jackson Manufacturing Company's mill work and dam; the sewers of Lowell, Massachusetts; the Nashua Mills; the aqueduct, cistern and pumping apparatus for the Boston Iron Company; the Lewiston Water Power Company; the bursting of a locomotive for the Boston and Lowell Railroad; and the cold well at Brandon, Vermont.
The series consists of several folders of drawings, including sketches of an apparatus for making signal sounds, and a design for a mercurial pump, and various scientific instruments. There are also copies of drawings of a differential galvanometer, dynamometer, pneumatic apparatus, and pneumatic glasses. The originals are located in Series 9, Drawings, circa 1835-1872. A significant portion of the series consists of Boyden's investigations of the causes of fires in Boston, including statistics and eyewitness accounts. The series also contains Boyden's computations and design for a chronometer.
Boyden is the author of several published papers found in this series, including "Researches in Meteorology," "Paper on Mechanical force," "An Essay on Caloric's Repulsing Caloric and its Attracting Ponderable Matter," and "Paper on Sound." "Explosions produced by Niter in Burning Buildings" appeared in The Boston Post May 9, 1862. Boyden also wrote Researches in Physics, which was printed in 1863. The series also contains translations and copies of papers and articles on various scientific subjects, including magnetism, electricity, heat, light, meteorology, and physics. These include articles from the Annales de Chimie et de Physique (Annals of Chemistry and Physics), the Bulletin des Sciences Mathématiques (Bulletin of the Mathematical Sciences), the Annalen der Physik und Chemie (Annals of Physics and Chemistry), Mémoires de l'Academie Royale (Imperial) des Sciences de l'Institut de France, and Les Comptes Rendus de l'Académie des Sciences (The Proceedings of the French Academy of Sciences). Boyden also collected single works, including A Treatise on the Heat of Permanent Gases by John Plana, New Branch of Physics, or Studies Concerning Bodies in the Spheroidal State by P. H. Boutigny, and Thermochrosis, or Calorific Coloration by Macedoine Melloni.
Nine miscellaneous folders contain citations from encyclopedias, notes from scientific articles and newspapers, calculations, notes on laws, notes from experiments, a tide table, accounts of the weather, directions for experiments, specifications for a section of a canal built in Lowell by the Proprietors of the Locks and Canals, and a description of a heliostat. One oversize miscellaneous folder contains a legal document concerning lease from the Boston and Roxbury Mill Corporation to Horace Gray, a plan of a screwdriver, a table of experiments made in grinding rye at the City Mills, and experiments on the flow of water over dams made at the Lower Locks in Lowell, Massachusetts.
Series 5, Notebooks, 1819-1867, consists of bound notebooks ranging in size from 5" x 7" to 7" x 8". The notebooks demonstrate Boyden's wide-ranging scientific interests. They contain primarily technical information, such as experiments on sound, electromagnetism, and thermometers and include drawings and tables with data. His notebooks include excerpts from scientific journals on physics and chemistry, including some materials in French.
The personal memoranda feature notes from his travels around New England and the Mid-Atlantic States, including descriptions of railroads, dams, and mills; bridges in Georgetown, Washington, District of Columbia; a smelting furnace in Pottsville, Pennsylvania; and the Baltimore Water Works aqueduct. Several additional personal notebooks document Boyden's property and expenditures. Many notebooks were written or corrected by others, presumably Boyden's assistants, including Edward Sawyer, Levi York, Maximilian S. G. Wilde, Charles Leonard, Charles Mason, Jeremiah Dickson, L.W. Cushing, and A. Neill. One common subject is Boyden's work with turbines and water-wheels at New England mills and manufacturing companies. Many notebooks record turbine experiments at the Lowell Appleton Company, where Boyden developed the Boyden turbine, and at the Atlantic Cotton Mills. For more information on Boyden's work at the Atlantic Cotton Mills, see Series 6, Lawsuits, 1836-1864 and Series 2, Notes on Turbines, 1833-1870.
Other notebooks document Boyden's involvement in the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company in Manchester, New Hampshire, where he developed a hydraulic power system. Other mills Boyden studied include the Stark Mills, the Lawrence Company's mills, and the Boston and Roxbury Mill Dam. Boyden was interested in the construction of canals and locks, including the Weston Canal near Lowell, Massachusetts. Railroad surveys comprise a significant portion of the notebooks' content and include his work with railroad companies, including the Boston and Lowell Railroad Corporation and the Boston and Worcester Railroad Corporation. Boyden conducted a survey of a cold well at Brandon, Vermont. More information about that well can be found in Series 3, Subject Files, circa 1827-1875, and Series 3, Notes and Papers, 1806-1879.
Series 6, Lawsuits, 1836-1864, consists of legal materials related to lawsuits Boyden was involved in, both as a plaintiff and as a witness. The majority of the series is comprised of documents relating to Boyden's Atlantic Cotton Mills lawsuit, a conflict over whether Boyden had a right to conduct tests on turbines built from his design at the Atlantic Cotton Mills. The suit also involved a dispute over Boyden's patent rights to his turbine improvements used at the Atlantic Cotton Mills. On February 14, 1856, the court decided in favor of Boyden, and required the Atlantic Cotton Mills to award him reparations.
The series contains copies of correspondence related to Boyden's dealings with the Atlantic Cotton Mills, including letters to and from Charles S. Storrow and William Gray, treasurers of the Atlantic Cotton Mills. Also included are depositions; replies to allegations; Boyden's drafts of his answers to interrogatories; and calculations, notes, and drawings, presumably used as evidence in court. Bernhard Schultze (see Series 12, Bernhard Schultze Materials, 1837-1857) compared and corrected Boyden's November 21, 1855 reply to the answer of the Atlantic Cotton Mills and a statement of some expenses in measuring the power expended in actuating turbine No. 3 of the Atlantic Cotton Mills.
Also included are letters of reference for Boyden, probably related to his lawsuit of the Nashua and Lowell Railroad; Boyden's answers to interrogatories filed by the Boston Water Power Company in the case of Boston Water Power Company v. Horace Gray, which also includes his answers to interrogatories filed by the Boston and Worcester Railroad Company in regard to the receiving basin of the Boston Water Power Company; and Boyden's deposition in the case of Oswego Canal Company v. Henry M. Ames & Isaac L. Merriam.
Series 7, Financial Papers, 1820-1876, contains both personal and business financial papers. A large portion documents the New England Glass Company, including records of the stockholders meetings and end of year reports on the financial state of the company. There are also copies of receipts of bills Boyden sent to companies he worked for, including the Atlantic Cotton Mills, the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company, the Boston and Lowell Railroad Corporation, the Ames Manufacturing Company, the Salmon Falls Manufacturing Company, the Lowell Machine Shop, and the Holyoke Water Power Company. Boyden also received stock dividends from some of the same companies and others, including the Merrimack Manufacturing Company, the New England Glass Company, the Old Colony Railroad Company, Stark Manufacturing Company, the Lancaster Mills, the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company, the Boston and Lowell Railroad Corporation, and the Boston Gas Light Company.
Another aspect of the papers includes Boyden's requests to buy certain items, including metals, glass cylinders, and wire for his experiments; books in English, French and German; and periodicals. There are also reports of Boyden's income for the Internal Revenue Service dating from 1864-1871. One document is a quitclaim deed for the Savin Hill property in Dorchester, Massachusetts, which Boyden surveyed. Surveying records can be found in Series 3, Subject Files, circa 1827-1875.
Series 8, Patents, 1838-1847, consists of three subseries, Subseries 1, Boyden's Patents, 1843-1847; Subseries 2, Other Patents, 1838-1843; and Subseries 3, Patent Assignments, 1849-1856.
Subseries 1, Boyden's Patents, 1843-1847, consists of issued patents for Boyden's turbine improvements with attached drawings and specifications, including patents for improvement in turbines, September 20, 1843 (US Patent 10,026); improvement in hydraulic motors, September 20, 1843 (US Patent 10,027); improvements in hanging shafts of waterwheels, April 17, 1847 (US Patent 5,068); and improvement in diffuser for waterwheels, May 1, 1847 (US Patent 5,090).
Subseries 2, Other Patents, 1838-1843, consists of a patent granted to John R. Wheeler for an improved waterwheel on April 14, 1838, and a patent granted to Amasa B. Beckwith for improvement in waterwheels on October 20, 1843.
Subseries 3, Patent Assignments, 1849-1856, consists of legal documents giving various companies the right to use Boyden's patented turbine improvements in their mills in exchange for royalties. Companies include the Great Falls Manufacturing Company, the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company, the Appleton Company, the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company, the Merrimack Manufacturing Company, the Lowell Manufacturing Company, and the Lowell Machine Shop.
Series 9, Drawings, circa 1835-1872, contains oversize drawings and some tables, ranging in size from approximately 48'' x 30'' to 21'' x 30''. Some of the papers are brittle and crumble easily. The series contains one work in German, "Werke Theorie und Bau der Wasserraeder" (A Work on the Theory and Construction of Waterwheels).
A significant portion of the series consists of Boyden's designs for turbines used at various mills throughout New England, including the Ames Manufacturing Company; the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company; the Appleton Company, the Atlantic Cotton Mills; the Hamilton Manufacturing Company; the Essex Company Machine Shop and Blacksmith Shop; the Lancaster Mill; the Manchester Printing Works; the Merrimack Manufacturing Company; the Merrimack Print Works; the Perkins Mills the Salmon Falls Manufacturing Company; the Stark Mills; and the New England Worsted Company and Suncook Manufacturing Company. More information on Boyden's work designing turbines for these companies can be found in Series 1, Correspondence, 1823-1879; Series 2, Notes on Turbines, 1833-1870; and Series 5, Notebooks, 1819-1867.
Of particular note are drawings from "Lowell Hydraulic Experiments", a work published in 1855 by James B. Francis. Francis developed an improved turbine based on the inward flow Poncelet turbine, which became known as the Francis turbine and was more efficient than the outward flow Boyden turbine. Boyden was an associate of Francis's, but it is unclear how closely involved he was in the development of the Francis turbine. One subseries, Boyden's improvements, contains drawings that demonstrate Boyden's development of new turbines.
The series also includes records from Boyden's experiments on sound in Charlestown, Massachusetts. Notes from other experiments on sound can be found in Series 4, Notes and Papers, 1806-1879, and Series 5, Notebooks, 1819-1867. Included in the series are designs for various tools, including a chronometer, differential galvanometer, hydraulic apparatus, and pneumatic glasses. Smaller copies of some of these drawings can be found in Series 4, Notes and Papers, 1806-1879.
Two folders of miscellaneous materials include several tables documenting people admitted to mental hospitals, the observation of tides made at the Charlestown Navy Yard; a table of fires in Boston; experiments on the wheel of the Poncelet System; a plan and sections for showing the results of surveys at the cold well in Brandon, Vermont; and designs for a brass apparatus, a rack of reflectors, an apparatus for measuring the heights of water, a glass scale, and a dynamometer. Nine folders contain unidentified drawings.
Series 10, Printed Material, 1835-1879, contains newspaper clippings and other printed material collected by Boyden. The major subjects covered by the newspaper clippings include a campaign to supply Boston with drinking water, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the Smithsonian Institution. Other newspaper clippings discuss the career of Patrick Tracy Jackson, the founder of the Merrimack Manufacturing Company; Boyden's turbine wheel; railway accidents; a court case involving an escaped slave; the rotation of the earth; the establishment of a public library in Boston; the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; the Louisiana imbroglio of 1874-1875; and smoking. Boyden frequently clipped from the Daily Evening Traveller, the Boston Advertiser, The Boston Atlas, the Boston Post, and the Boston Evening Transcript. Some newspapers have been saved and placed in a folder in a map case drawer.
The series also includes a pamphlet entitled Martin's Twenty-One Years in the Boston Stock Market, or Fluctuations Therein from January 1835 to January 1856, two bulletins of new books offered by the Boston Public Library and marked up by Boyden, patents for Alfred Nobel's new explosive compound, several of Boyden's business cards, a print portrait of Boyden, and a metal sign that hung outside his office in Boston. The series contains one miscellaneous file that includes items such as a price list for mechanists' tools, an article on the phenomena of sound, and a table of the work and expenses on the Boston and Lowell Railroad.
Series 11, Seth Boyden Materials, 1840-1841, is comprised of documents related to the death of Uriah Boyden's father, Seth Boyden (1764-1840). Included are drawings of the headstones for the graves of Seth Boyden (1764-1840) and Uriah Boyden's sister, Sarah Boyden; Seth Boyden's last will and testament; a poster for an executer's sale; and the account of Uriah Boyden and Benjamin F. Boyden, the executers of Seth Boyden's (1764-1840) last will and testament.
Series 12, Bernhard Schultze Materials, 1837-1857, contains the letters and papers of Bernhard Schultze, a man employed by Boyden as a translator from around November 26, 1853 until his death in August 1857. Schultze was a witness in the case of Boyden v. Atlantic Cotton Mills and compared and corrected materials related to the case. These can be found in Series 6, Lawsuits, 1836-1864. He died from a head injury that occurred in Boyden's offices at 81 Washington Street.
More information about the accident in Boyden's official statement, August 17, 1857, to the coroner and the jury investigating Schultze's death, in Series 1, Correspondence, 1823-1879. Half of the materials are in German and consist of correspondence, receipts, registered letter slips, a medical bill, and a program for the Paine Festival and Annual Ball in 1857. Several of the documents relate to politics in the late 1850s and the election of 1856. Included is a newspaper article reporting on a pro-German James Buchanan rally; a circular supporting John C. Fremont and William L. Dayton, the Republican ticket in the election of 1856; and the by-laws of the Boston Kansas Club.
Series 13, Joseph Sidney Francis Materials, circa 1855-1872, consists of drawings made by Joseph Sidney Francis while studying at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. They are labeled as the property of James B. Francis, the hydraulic engineer and inventor of the Francis turbine who worked closely with Boyden. Included in this series are tables documenting the number of fires in Boston and the number of people admitted to French mental hospitals.
The papers are arranged into thirteen series. The contents of each series or subseries is arranged chronologically, with the exception of Series 3, which is arranged numerically, and Series 9, which is arranged alphabetically by subject. The series and subseries arrangement of the papers are as follows:
Series 1, Correspondence, 1823-1879
Subseries 1, Outgoing, 1830-1879
Subseries 2, Incoming, 1823-1879
Subseries 3, Miscellaneous, 1825-1879
Series 2, Notes on Turbines, 1833-1870
Series 3, Subject Files, circa 1827-1875
Series 4, Notes and Papers, 1806-1879
Series 5, Notebooks, 1819-1867
Series 6, Lawsuits, 1836-1864
Series 7, Financial Papers, 1820-1876
Series 8, Patents, 1838-1847
Subseries 1, Boyden Patents, 1843-1847
Subseries 2, Other Patents, 1838-1843
Subseries 3, Patent Assignments, 1849-1856
Series 9, Drawings, circa 1835-1872
Series 10, Printed Material, 1835-1879
Series 11, Seth Boyden (1764-1840) Materials, 1840-1841
Series 12, Bernhard Schultze Materials, 1837-1857
Series 13, Joseph Sidney Francis Materials, circa 1855-1872
Civil and mechanical engineer and multi-faceted scientist, Uriah Atherton Boyden was born on February 17, 1804 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. His father Seth Boyden (1764-1849) was a farmer and blacksmith and invented a machine to split leather (Reynolds 2010). His brother Seth Boyden (1788-1870) was a noted inventor in Newark, New Jersey, and in 1825 Boyden worked for him in a "leather and sheepskin bookbinding business" (Reynolds 2010). Boyden moved back to Massachusetts in 1828 and worked with James Hayward on surveys for the Boston and Providence Railroad, and with Loammi Baldwin on a dry dock for the Charlestown Navy Yard (now Boston Navy Yard) (Reynolds 2010). In the 1830s he opened his own engineering practice and worked on mills in the growing industrial center of Lowell, Massachusetts and was the chief engineer from 1836-1838 on the Nashua and Lowell Railroad. He designed a hydraulic power system for the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company in Manchester, New Hampshire around 1840 (American Society of Mechanical Engineers 1975, 5).
Boyden is best known for inventing the Boyden turbine, "the first turbine to be manufactured in quantity in the United States"(American Society of Mechanical Engineers 1975, 1). Boyden developed this turbine around 1844 while working for the Appleton Company in Lowell, Massachusetts(American Society of Mechanical Engineers 1975, 5). Boyden improved the efficiency of the Fourneyron outward flow turbine by "providing a conical approach passage for the incoming water… providing guide vanes in the outlet passages and by adding a submerged diffuser" (American Society of Mechanical Engineers 1975, 2). Boyden assigned his patent rights to a number of mills and manufacturing companies in New England and provided them with plans and specifications for turbines, although he did not oversee construction.
The Boyden turbine was superseded in 1849 by the more efficient inward flow Francis turbine, developed by James B. Francis with Boyden's assistance (American Society of Mechanical Engineers 1975, 2-3). The Francis turbine is now used throughout the world (Reynolds 2010).
After 1850, Boyden focused on scientific pursuits, including chemistry, physics, and meteorology. His other interests included the causes of fires in Boston, tobacco's effect on people's health, and mental illness in Europe and the United States. However, he rarely published the results of his research (Reynolds 2010). In 1874, Boyden "deposited $1,000 with the Franklin Institute of Philadelphia to be awarded to any resident of North America who should determine by experiment whether light and other physical rays are transmitted at the same velocity" (American Society of Mechanical Engineers 1975, 5). No one has claimed the prize. Boyden died on October 17, 1879 in Boston. In his will, he bequeathed approximately $250,000 to Harvard University, which it used to build an observatory in Peru (Reynolds 2010). The Boyden Observatory is now located in South Africa.
1975. The 102-inch Boyden Hydraulic Turbines at Harmony Mill No. 3, Cohoes, New York. The American Society of Mechanical Engineers. http://files.asme.org/ASMEORG/Communities/History/Landmarks/5507.pdf, (accessed 18 July 2010).
Reynolds, Terry S. 2010. Boyden, Uriah Atherton. American National Biography Online. Oxford University Press. http://www.anb.org/articles/13/13-00178.html (accessed 18 July 2010).
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