These records are the official minutes of the Board. They are compiled at the direction of the Secretary of the Smithsonian, who is also secretary to the Board, after
approval by the Regents' Executive Committee and by the Regents themselves. The minutes are edited, not a verbatim account of proceedings. For reasons unknown, there are no
manuscript minutes for the period from 1857 through 1890; and researchers must rely on printed minutes published in the Annual Report of the Smithsonian Institution instead.
Minutes are transferred regularly from the Secretary's Office to the Archives. Minutes less than 15 years old are closed to researchers. Indexes exist for the period from
1907 to 1946 and can be useful.
The Smithsonian Institution was created by authority of an Act of Congress approved August 10, 1846. The Act entrusted direction of the Smithsonian to a body called
the Establishment, composed of the President; the Vice President; the Chief Justice of the United States; the secretaries of State, War, Navy, Interior, and Agriculture; the
Attorney General; and the Postmaster General. In fact, however, the Establishment last met in 1877, and control of the Smithsonian has always been exercised by its Board of
Regents. The membership of the Regents consists of the Vice President and the Chief Justice of the United States; three members each of the Senate and House of Representatives;
two citizens of the District of Columbia; and seven citizens of the several states, no two from the same state. (Prior to 1970 the category of Citizen Regents not residents
of Washington consisted of four members). By custom the Chief Justice is Chancellor. The office was at first held by the Vice President. However, when Millard Fillmore succeeded
to the presidency on the death of Zachary Taylor in 1851, Chief Justice Roger Brooke Taney was chosen in his stead. The office has always been filled by the Chief Justice
since that time.
The Regents of the Smithsonian have included distinguished Americans from many walks of life. Ex officio members (Vice President) have been: Spiro T. Agnew, Chester A.
Arthur, Allen W. Barkley, John C. Breckenridge, George Bush, Schuyler Colfax, Calvin Coolidge, Charles Curtis, George M. Dallas, Charles G. Dawes, Charles W. Fairbanks, Millard
Fillmore, Gerald R. Ford, John N. Garner, Hannibal Hamlin, Thomas A. Hendricks, Garret A. Hobart, Hubert H. Humphrey, Andrew Johnson, Lyndon B. Johnson, William R. King, Thomas
R. Marshall, Walter F. Mondale, Levi P. Morton, Richard M. Nixon, Nelson A. Rockefeller, Theodore Roosevelt, James S. Sherman, Adlai E. Stevenson, Harry S. Truman, Henry A.
Wallace, William A. Wheeler, Henry Wilson.
Ex officio members (Chief Justice) have been: Roger B. Taney, Salmon P. Chase, Nathan Clifford, Morrison R. Waite, Samuel F. Miller, Melville W. Fuller, Edward D. White,
William Howard Taft, Charles Evans Hughes, Harlan F. Stone, Fred M. Vinson, Earl Warren, Warren E. Burger.
Regents on the part of the Senate have been: Clinton P. Anderson, Newton Booth, Sidney Breese, Lewis Cass, Robert Milledge Charlton, Bennet Champ Clark, Francis M. Cockrell,
Shelby Moore Cullom, Garrett Davis, Jefferson Davis, George Franklin Edmunds, George Evans, Edwin J. Garn, Walter F. George, Barry Goldwater, George Gray, Hannibal Hamlin,
Nathaniel Peter Hill, George Frisbie Hoar, Henry French Hollis, Henry M. Jackson, William Lindsay, Henry Cabot Lodge, Medill McCormick, James Murray Mason, Samuel Bell Maxey,
Robert B. Morgan, Frank E. Moss, Claiborne Pell, George Wharton Pepper, David A. Reed, Leverett Saltonstall, Hugh Scott, Alexander H. Smith, Robert A. Taft, Lyman Trumbull,
Wallace H. White, Jr., Robert Enoch Withers.
Regents on the part of the House of Representatives have included: Edward P. Boland, Frank T. Bow, William Campbell Breckenridge, Overton Brooks, Benjamin Butterworth,
Clarence Cannon, Lucius Cartrell, Hiester Clymer, William Colcock, William P. Cole, Jr., Maurice Connolly, Silvio O. Conte, Edward E. Cox, Edward H. Crump, John Dalzell, Nathaniel
Deering, Hugh A. Dinsmore, William English, John Farnsworth, Scott Ferris, Graham Fitch, James Garfield, Charles L. Gifford, T. Alan Goldsborough, Frank L. Greene, Gerry Hazleton,
Benjamin Hill, Henry Hilliard, Ebenezer Hoar, William Hough, William M. Howard, Albert Johnson, Leroy Johnson, Joseph Johnston, Michael Kirwan, James T. Lloyd, Robert Luce,
Robert McClelland, Samuel K. McConnell, Jr., George H. Mahon, George McCrary, Edward McPherson, James R. Mann, George Perkins Marsh, Norman Y. Mineta, A. J. Monteague, R.
Walton Moore, Walter H. Newton, Robert Dale Owen, James Patterson, William Phelps, Luke Poland, John Van Schaick Lansing Pruyn, B. Carroll Reece, Ernest W. Roberts, Otho Robards
Singleton, Frank Thompson, Jr., John M. Vorys, Hiram Warner, Joseph Wheeler.
Citizen Regents have been: David C. Acheson, Louis Agassiz, James B. Angell, Anne L. Armstrong, William Backhouse Astor, J. Paul Austin, Alexander Dallas Bache, George
Edmund Badger, George Bancroft, Alexander Graham Bell, James Gabriel Berrett, John McPherson Berrien, Robert W. Bingham, Sayles Jenks Bowen, William G. Bowen, Robert S. Brookings,
John Nicholas Brown, William A. M. Burden, Vannevar Bush, Charles F. Choate, Jr., Rufus Choate, Arthur H. Compton, Henry David Cooke, Henry Coppee, Samuel Sullivan Cox, Edward
H. Crump, James Dwight Dana, Harvey N. Davis, William Lewis Dayton, Everette Lee Degolyer, Richard Delafield, Frederic A. Delano, Charles Devens, Matthew Gault Emery, Cornelius
Conway Felton, Robert V. Fleming, Murray Gell-Mann, Robert F. Goheen, Asa Gray, George Gray, Crawford Hallock Greenwalt, Nancy Hanks, Caryl Parker Haskins, Gideon Hawley,
John B. Henderson, John B. Henderson, Jr., A. Leon Higginbotham, Jr., Gardner Greene Hubbard, Charles Evans Hughes, Carlisle H. Humelsine, Jerome C. Hunsaker, William Preston
Johnston, Irwin B. Laughlin, Walter Lenox, Augustus P. Loring, John Maclean, William Beans Magruder, John Walker Maury, Montgomery Cunningham Meigs, John C. Merriam, R. Walton
Moore, Roland S. Morris, Dwight W. Morrow, Richard Olney, Peter Parker, Noah Porter, William Campbell Preston, Owen Josephus Roberts, Richard Rush, William Winston Seaton,
Alexander Roby Shepherd, William Tecumseh Sherman, Otho Robards Singleton, Joseph Gilbert Totten, John Thomas Towers, Frederic C. Walcott, Richard Wallach, Thomas J. Watson,
Jr., James E. Webb, James Clarke Welling, Andrew Dickson White, Henry White, Theodore Dwight Woolsey.
Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory. Assistant Director (Administration) Search this
4 cu. ft. (8 document boxes)
This record unit consists primarily of administrative files maintained by Robert V. Bartnik in his capacity as Assistant Director (Administration), 1970-1973. A smaller
amount of material was created by his predecessor, Tillinqhast, 1964-1969. The files are arranged alphabetically by subject and include correspondence, memoranda, charts,
reports, and scientific papers. The records are primarily administrative in nature and concern personnel, fiscal planning, conferences and meetings, computer operations, and
building and office space matters. Of special interest are files documenting SAO relations with other astronomical organizations including the Cambridge Radio Observatory
Committee and the Northeast Radio Observatory Corporation. Also contained in the record unit is material concerning SAO scientific projects including Cannonball, Celescope,
the Satellite Tracking Program, and the Environmental Sciences Program. A small amount of correspondence of Leon Campbell, Jr., Special Assistant to the Director, 1969-1971,
is included in the records.
Under the administrative control of the Office of the Director, the Assistant Director (Administration) was responsible for coordinating the Smithsonian Astrophysical
Observatory's (SAO) service requirements and maintaining liaison with Smithsonian headquarters in Washington, D.C. Responsibilities of the Assistant Director (Administration)
included contracting, procurement, and fiscal control; personnel management; budget planning and control; and management information programs. Prior to 1973, the title of
the position was Assistant Director (Management). Kenneth H. Drummond became the first Assistant Director (Management) when the position was created in 1959 and served until
1961. Canton W. Tillinghast held the office from 1961 until his death in 1969. Robert V. Bartnik was appointed to the position in 1970 and served until 1973.
Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory. Radio and Geoastronomy Division Search this
3 cu. ft. (3 record storage boxes)
These records were created primarily by Arthur Edward Lilley as head of the division. Basic administrative files include information on the Northeast Radio Observatory
Corporation (NEROC) and its Haystack Observatory in Westfield, Massachusetts; international astronomical organizations; and projects of two investigators of the division,
Mario Grossi and Giuseppe Colombo. A second series of files concerns the Satellite Tracking Program, chiefly including material in support of SAO's NASA contract for FY 1980;
a proposal to support the Goddard Space Flight Center in its Laser Tracking Network, including the proposal to take over the network completely; information about foreign
tracking stations; and information about relocating a tracking station to India through agreement with the India Space Research Corporation (ISRO).
The Radio and Geoastronomy Division was formed in fiscal year 1979 by the combination of two existing divisions: Radio Astronomy and Geoastronomy. The first of these
two was formed in 1973 under the reorganization of the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) conducted by new director George B. Field. Arthur Edward Lilley (b. 1928),
professor of radio astronomy at Harvard University, was appointed associate director of the observatory in charge of this division, a position he retained through the merger
until the end of calendar year 1986. The Division of Geoastronomy was formed in 1970 under the direction of George Charles Weiffenbach (b. 1921), who joined the staff in 1969.
At the time this was one of the few divisions into which the observatory was divided, and it retained its identity under Field's 1973 reorganization. Weiffenbach retained
the directorship until 1976, when John C. Gregory took over as acting associate director until the merger of the two divisions.