Skip to main content Smithsonian Institution

Search Results

Collections Search Center
120 documents - page 1 of 6

C. Earle Smith Jr. papers

Creator:
Smith, C. Earle (Claude Earle), 1922-1987  Search this
Names:
University of Alabama  Search this
Extent:
7.72 Linear feet (20 document boxes and 1 restricted box)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Place:
Guilá Naquitz Cave (Mexico)
Oaxaca (Mexico : State)
Tehuacán (Mexico)
Peru
Date:
1942-1998
bulk 1960-1987
Summary:
C. Earle Smith Jr. (1922-1987) was one of the founders of the modern field of paleobotany. This collection documents his research and professional activities through correspondence, research notes, data, manuscripts, publications, and photographs. Represented in the collection is his fieldwork in Mexico, Peru, Venezuela, and Costa Rica.
Scope and Contents:
This collection documents the research and professional activities of C. Earle Smith Jr. through correspondence, research notes, data, manuscripts, publications, and photographs. Represented in the collection is his fieldwork in Mexico, Peru, Venezuela, and Costa Rica. The only materials pertaining to his early work in Bat Cave are a few pages of notes and articles about his discovery of early corn remains. Most of the collection dates from the 1960s up to his death in 1987. There is, however, some correspondence dated after his death regarding the return of specimens that he had been analyzing for others. The collection also contains his files as a professor at the University of Alabama; papers he presented; talks that he gave; and photographs of plant remains. His correspondence makes up the bulk of collection and can be found throughout the series. He corresponded with eminent figures in the fields of anthropology and botany, including Kent V. Flannery, Richard MacNeish, Paul Mangelsdorf, and other colleagues.

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 As an historical document, its contents may be at odds with contemporary views and terminology and considered offensive today.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.
Arrangement:
This collection is arranged in 8 series: (1) Correspondence, 1962-1998; (2) Research, 1942-1991; (3) Writings, 1956-1987; (4) Professional Activities, 1971-1987; (5) University of Alabama, 1964-1987; (6) Writings by Others, 1960-1984; (7) Personal Files, 1950-1953, 1964-1987; (8) Photographs, circa 1960s-1982
Biographical Note:
Claude Earle Smith Jr. was one of the founders of the modern field of archaeobotany. Known as "Smitty" to his friends, he was born on March 8, 1922, in Boston, Massachusetts, and raised in Orlando, Florida. He was trained as an economic botanist at Harvard University, where he earned his bachelor's (1949), master's (1951), and doctorate (1953) in botany.

As an undergraduate student at Harvard in 1941, Smith assisted Richard Evans Schultes in collecting plants in the Colombian Amazon. While in the field, news reached Smith of the bombing of Pearl Harbor and he decided to return home to enlist in the Navy. After the war, he continued his studies at Harvard and, in 1948, he was sent by Paul C. Manglesdorf to excavate Bat Cave, New Mexico, where he and Herbert Dick, another Harvard student, discovered the earliest remains of corn. Smith coauthored with Mangelsdorf "A Discovery of Remains of Prehistoric Maize in New Mexico" (1949). Throughout his career, Smith continued to study the early domestication and distribution of corn and other plants including cotton, avocado, and beans.

With his research focused on archaeologically-recovered plant remains and their usage by humans, Smith served as botanist at various archaeological sites in Latin America, working with Richard MacNeish in Tehuacán Valley; Kent Flannery in Oaxaca Valley; Paul Tolstoy in the Basin of Mexico; Ronald Spores in Nochixtlan; Terence Grieder in La Galgada, Peru; Thomas Lynch in Callejón de Huaylas, Peru; Joyce Marcus in Cañeta Valley, Peru; Anna Roosevelt in the Middle Orinoco area of Venezuela; and Michael J. Snarkis in Costa Rica. He also conducted ethnobotanical fieldwork in the Yucatán, Panama, the United States, Europe, Southeast Asia, Africa, the Pacific, and Australia.

From 1953 to 1958, Smith served as assistant curator of botany at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia and as acting director of the Taylor Memorial Arboretum. He was also a curator of botany at the Field Museum of Natural History (1959-1961) and Senior Research Botanist for the Agricultural Research Service at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (1962-1969). In 1970, Smith took a faculty position in the anthropology and biology departments at the University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa and was acting chair of the anthropology department between 1981 and 1986. He served as president of the Society for Economic Botany in 1979.

At the age of 65, Smith was killed in an automobile accident on October 19, 1987.

Sources Consulted

Lentz, David L. "C. Earle Smith, Jr. 1922-1987." Economic Botany 42, no. 2 (1988): 284-285.

Schultes, Richard Evans. "How I Met C. Earle Smith." Journal of Ethnobiology 10, no. 2 (1990): 119-121.

Chronology

1922 -- Born on March 8 in Boston, Massachusetts

1940-1941 -- Studies at Harvard University

1941 -- Assists Richard Evans Schultes in ethnobotanical collection in Colombian Amazons

1942-1946 -- Serves in Navy

1946 -- Returns to Harvard to continue his studies

1948 -- Excavates Bat Cave in New Mexico and discovers earliest remains of corn

1949 -- Earns A.B. cum laude at Harvard

1951 -- Earns A.M. at Harvard

1953 -- Earns Ph.D. at Harvard University

1953-1958 -- Consultant for Smith, Kline and French Acting Director at Taylor Memorial Arboretum Assistant Curator in the Department of Botany at Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia

1959-1961 -- Associate Curator in Department of Botany at Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago

1962-1969 -- Senior Research Botanist at Agricultural Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture

1970-1987 -- Professor of Anthropology and Botany, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa

1979-1980 -- President of Society for Economic Botany

1987 -- Killed in automobile accident on October 19
Related Materials:
Photographs from C. Earle Smith Jr.'s excavation of Bat Cave can be found in Photo Lot R86-67 Copies of Herbert W. Dick photographs of excavations at Bat Cave, 1948-1950, https://sova.si.edu/record/NAA.PhotoLot.R86-67.
Provenance:
At his death, C. Earle Smith Jr.'s papers were left with the Department of Anthropology at the University of Alabama. They were donated to the National Anthropological Archives by Smith's widow, Roberta Smith Largin.
Restrictions:
Grant proposal reviews in Series 4: Professional Activities and materials with student grades in Series 5: University of Alabama have been restricted.

Access to the C. Earle Smith Jr. papers requires an appointment.
Rights:
Contact repository for terms of use.
Topic:
Botany  Search this
Plant remains (Archaeology)  Search this
Botany, Economic  Search this
Citation:
C. Earle Smith Jr. papers, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution
Identifier:
NAA.2006-24
See more items in:
C. Earle Smith Jr. papers
Archival Repository:
National Anthropological Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-naa-2006-24

Agave stricta Salm-Dyck

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Carl A. Purpus  Search this
Place:
Tehuacan, Mexico, North America - Neotropics
Collection Date:
1907
Taxonomy:
Plantae Monocotyledonae Asparagales Asparagaceae Agavoideae
Published Name:
Agave stricta Salm-Dyck
Barcode:
00163599
USNM Number:
1023734
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/397780f22-9765-4397-b2a0-05b8488ae121
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_2544832
Online Media:

Tillandsia recurvata L.

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Ex herb. Carlos Sarton  Search this
Place:
Tehuacan., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
1857
Common name:
Barba de Viejo
small ballmoss
Taxonomy:
Plantae Monocotyledonae Poales Bromeliaceae Tillandsioideae
Published Name:
Tillandsia recurvata L.
Barcode:
03971806
USNM Number:
784502
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/3d5227e7c-1230-40b0-acf1-e259c6386c7a
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15735253

Castilleja tenuiflora Benth.

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Blas P. Reko  Search this
Place:
Hills behind El Riego, Tehuacan., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
7 Sep 1919
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Scrophulariales Scrophulariaceae
Published Name:
Castilleja tenuiflora Benth.
Barcode:
03915715
USNM Number:
988731
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/38b5839ca-c7ad-4705-be8b-bddd48e95603
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15649745

Hemichaena levigata (B.L. Rob. & Greenm.) Thieret

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Liebmann, --  Search this
Place:
S. Lorenzo pr. Tehuacan., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
Dec 1841
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Scrophulariales Scrophulariaceae (phrymaceae)
Published Name:
Hemichaena levigata (B.L. Rob. & Greenm.) Thieret
Barcode:
03880193
USNM Number:
1110367
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/316b75130-b410-4194-953a-e92197a21de6
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15643444

Hemichaena levigata (B.L. Rob. & Greenm.) Thieret

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Blas P. Reko  Search this
Place:
Hills behind El Riego, Tehuacan., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
7 Sep 1919
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Scrophulariales Scrophulariaceae (phrymaceae)
Published Name:
Hemichaena levigata (B.L. Rob. & Greenm.) Thieret
Barcode:
03880195
USNM Number:
988734
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/382085484-35b7-42a1-992e-362709147694
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15644208

Castilleja tenuiflora Benth.

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Liebmann, --  Search this
Place:
Tehuacan., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
Dec 1841
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Scrophulariales Scrophulariaceae
Published Name:
Castilleja tenuiflora Benth.
Barcode:
03915780
USNM Number:
1110342
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/38d109f84-72b3-40ac-aa34-1e2fe25c31e5
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15603429

Echeveria amoena Y. De Smet ex É. Morren

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Carl A. Purpus  Search this
Place:
On rocks + slopes. Tehuacan., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
1904
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Rosales Crassulaceae
Published Name:
Echeveria amoena Y. De Smet ex É. Morren
Barcode:
03770072
USNM Number:
399651
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/3b0524992-fede-424f-9985-17794093460e
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15247000

Villadia sp.

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Carl A. Purpus  Search this
Place:
Tehuacan., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
1895 to 1896
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Rosales Crassulaceae
Published Name:
Villadia sp.
Barcode:
03775858
USNM Number:
1431018
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/3cba2463c-9f2d-4707-8a89-ac6194e07e5e
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15217139

Descurainia sp.

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Liebmann, --  Search this
Place:
Tehuacan., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
Dec 1841
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Brassicales Brassicaceae
Published Name:
Descurainia sp.
Barcode:
03755627
USNM Number:
289717
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/32aa1a0b3-66b0-4b0e-8d73-4f4053050691
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15213538

Thompsonella minutiflora (Rose) Britton & Rose

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Carl A. Purpus  Search this
Place:
Tehuacan., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
1904
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Rosales Crassulaceae
Published Name:
Thompsonella minutiflora (Rose) Britton & Rose
Barcode:
03775743
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/360f413f7-ac24-4cf4-88e8-20c7cff5e538
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15216291

Eruca vesicaria subsp. sativa (Mill.) Thell.

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
ex Caec. et Ed Seler  Search this
Place:
Puebla prope Tehuacan., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
Jul 1888
Common name:
rocketsalad
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Brassicales Brassicaceae
Published Name:
Eruca vesicaria subsp. sativa (Mill.) Thell.
Barcode:
03584402
USNM Number:
1392631
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/3def850b8-c815-45de-ab39-c6735b8893f5
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15196948

Cocculus diversifolius DC.

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Liebmann, --  Search this
Place:
Tehuacan., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
Dec 1841
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Ranunculales Menispermaceae
Published Name:
Cocculus diversifolius DC.
Barcode:
03577305
USNM Number:
1492752
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/321a47bea-5906-47e7-a9b1-7656370be866
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15190048

Clematis drummondii Torr. & A. Gray

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Sartor  Search this
Sartov-M  Search this
Place:
Tehuacan., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
1867
Common name:
Drummond's clematis
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Ranunculales Ranunculaceae
Published Name:
Clematis drummondii Torr. & A. Gray
Barcode:
03675997
USNM Number:
781459
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/3bae7074e-0260-44bd-8d41-71f0aecfbf1b
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15130181

Portulaca pilosa L.

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Blas P. Reko  Search this
Place:
Tehuacan., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
8 Sep 1919
Common name:
Yerba de agua also Verdolaga and Afuere.
amor de un rato
guie' de ti rratu
kiss me quick
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Caryophyllales Portulacaceae
Published Name:
Portulaca pilosa L.
Barcode:
03606447
USNM Number:
988683
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/36d46e5b8-8cb1-4692-bcae-43fdf00d68c2
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15116874

Rivina humilis L.

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Blas P. Reko  Search this
Place:
Hills behind El Riejo, Tehuacán., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
7 Sep 1919
Common name:
Jumbel pepper bush
Pepper bush
Polo
Stakamahatsji
Vierba Mora
rougeplant
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Caryophyllales Phytolaccaceae (petiveriaceae)
Published Name:
Rivina humilis L.
Barcode:
03662848
USNM Number:
988674
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/37b0d106b-1a24-4e0a-b77e-cf196df6e79c
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15100833

Allionia choisyi Standl.

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Liebmann, --  Search this
Place:
Tehuacan., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
Dec 1841
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Caryophyllales Nyctaginaceae
Published Name:
Allionia choisyi Standl.
Barcode:
03642195
USNM Number:
1490542
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/3c1ac6423-b379-435a-8607-2c34d70dca7e
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15078858

Boerhavia caribaea Jacq.

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
ex Caec. et Ed Seler  Search this
Place:
Tehuacan., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
Jun 1888
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Caryophyllales Nyctaginaceae
Published Name:
Boerhavia caribaea Jacq.
Barcode:
03642912
USNM Number:
933319
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/3d444a401-6f58-4be3-9ded-3ffae7477d30
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15079589

Agonandra racemosa (DC.) Standl.

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Liebmann, --  Search this
Place:
Tehuacan., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
Dec 1841
Common name:
sabi guini
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Santalales Opiliaceae
Published Name:
Agonandra racemosa (DC.) Standl.
Barcode:
03659706
USNM Number:
1492782
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/3d66a2bab-a937-408a-84eb-720ec13d9fb2
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15019744

Psittacanthus mayanus Standl. & Steyerm.

Biogeographical Region:
79 - Mexico  Search this
Collector:
Blas P. Reko  Search this
Place:
Tehuacán., Mexico, North America
Collection Date:
7 Sep 1919
Common name:
Matapalo (She one)
Taxonomy:
Plantae Dicotyledonae Santalales Loranthaceae
Published Name:
Psittacanthus mayanus Standl. & Steyerm.
Barcode:
03655563
USNM Number:
988694
See more items in:
Botany
Flowering plants and ferns
Data Source:
NMNH - Botany Dept.
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/34937e15d-c907-4697-96f0-927c3f4ea758
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:nmnhbotany_15012044

Modify Your Search







or


Narrow By