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Lester Frank Ward Papers

Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Extent:
0.75 cu. ft. (1 document box) (1 half document box)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Manuscripts
Sketches
Black-and-white photographs
Date:
1882-1913, with related materials to circa 1965
Descriptive Entry:
This collection consists primarily of incoming and outgoing correspondence documenting Lester Frank Ward's paleobotanical research and his work as Honorary Curator in charge of the United States National Museum (USNM) collection of fossil plants. Also included are letters concerning his official duties with the United States Geological Survey (USGS). The correspondence concerns the acquisition and identification of specimens; the preparation and publication of scientific manuscripts; field work and expeditions; and administrative matters. Ward corresponded with most of the prominent paleobotanists of the late nineteenth century including Leo Lesquereux, John Strong Newberry, and Arthur Hollick. Other correspondents include USNM and USGS scientific and administrative staff and personnel of domestic and foreign museums, universities, and research institutions. The correspondence does not touch upon Ward's sociological theories and writings. Researchers interested in that aspect of his career should consult collections of Ward's papers at Brown University and the Library of Congress.

The collection also includes a small amount of correspondence of Ward's assistant and colleague Frank Hall Knowlton; a photograph of Ward taken in his USNM office in 1886; and a pencil sketch of Ward.

Researchers should also consult Record Unit 220, records of the Department of Botany, United States National Museum, for other material documenting Ward's career at the USNM.
Historical Note:
Lester Frank Ward (1841-1913), paleontologist and sociologist, was born in Joliet, Illinois. After serving in the Union Army during the Civil War, he moved to Washington, D.C. From 1865 to 1881, Ward was employed by the United States Treasury Department. During this period he studied at Columbian College (now The George Washington University) from which he received the A.B. degree in 1869, the LL.B. degree in 1871, and the A.M. degree in 1872. In 1882, Ward was appointed Assistant Geologist in the United States Geological Survey (USGS). He served the USGS for the remainder of his career in the federal government, receiving promotions to Geologist in 1883, and Paleontologist in 1892. In addition to his USGS work, Ward was appointed Honorary Curator of the Department of Fossil Plants in the United States National Museum in 1882. He remained in charge of the national collections of fossil plants until his resignation from the USGS in 1905. In that year he accepted a faculty appointment at Brown University, where he remained until his death.

Ward was considered one of the foremost paleobotanists of his time. His work with the USGS concentrated upon the relation of fossil plants to geology, and their value and importance in stratigraphic investigations. He also made valuable contributions to paleobotany by compiling extensive indices of the genera and species of fossil plants and their places in the published record. His scientific bibliography included over one hundred and fifty titles.

He is probably best remembered for his pioneering work in sociology. Between 1883 and his death, he completed several important works including Dynamic Sociology (1883), Outlines of Sociology (1898), Pure Sociology (1903), and Applied Sociology (1906).
Topic:
Paleontology  Search this
Geologists  Search this
Genre/Form:
Manuscripts
Sketches
Black-and-white photographs
Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
Identifier:
Record Unit 7321
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-sia-faru7321

LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY.

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
Identifier:
Record Unit 7321, Series 1
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e229

Box 1

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY.
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e238

Folder 1 B-C, general. Correspondents include John Henry Comstock, 1886

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY. / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e245

Folder 2 Berry, Edward Wilber, 1901-1904

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY. / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e256

Folder 3 Clark, William Bullock, 1889-1890, 1900-1904

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY. / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e267

Folder 4 D-F, general. Correspondents include Constantin Freiherr von Ettingshausen,1886-1888; and William Morris Fontaine, 1885, 1888, 1901

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY. / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e278

Folder 5 Fairchild, Herman Leroy, 1893-1895. Of special interest is a letter of February 8, 1893 which contains Ward's thoughts on the scientific career of John Strong Newberry

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY. / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e290

Folder 6 G-I, general. Correspondents include Grove Karl Gilbert, 1886, 1890; and Charles Willard Hayes, 1902-1904

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY. / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e301

Folders 7-13 Hollick, Arthur, 1892-1904, 1912, 1919-1920, 1925. Primarily concerns Hollick's completion of John I. Northrup's study of the Brighton fossil plant collection. See also under John I. Northrup, folder 21. Correspondence after 1904 is betwee...

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY. / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e312

Folder 14 Knowlton, Frank Hall, 1885-1896. Includes correspondence concerning Knowlton's field work in Yellowstone National Park, 1888; New Mexico and Arizona, 1889; and Montana, 1890. Also included is a letter from Ward to C. Hart Merriam (August 20, ...

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY. / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e323

Folder 15 L-M, general. Correspondents include Arthur Lakes, 1890; William Libbey, Jr., 1893; Robert Hills Loughridge, 1886-1887; Othniel Charles Marsh, 1898; and George P. Merrill, 1898

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY. / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e334

Folders 16-20 Lesquereux, Charles Leo, 1882-1889. Primarily concerns his work identifying fossil plant specimens for the United States National Museum and the United States Geological Survey

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY. / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e345

Folder 21 Marsh, Othniel Charles, 1898-1899

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Container:
Box 1 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY. / Box 1
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e357

Box 2

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY.
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e369

Folder 1 N-S, general. Correspondents include Henry Fairfield Osborn, 1901; Charles Smith Prosser, 1886, 1888; Richard Rathbun, 1898, 1905-1906; and Charles H. Sternberg,1887-1888, 1899

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Container:
Box 2 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY. / Box 2
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e376

Folder 2 Newberry, John Strong, 1882-1891. Letter of June 7, 1889 contains Newberry's remarks on Ferdinand V. Hayden

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Container:
Box 2 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY. / Box 2
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e387

Folder 3 Northrup, John I., 1888-1892. Concerns Northrup's study of the Bridgton fossil plant collection. See also under Arthur Hollick, folders 6-12

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Container:
Box 2 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY. / Box 2
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e398

Folder 4 T-Z, general. Correspondents include C. D. White, 1886-1888

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Container:
Box 2 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY. / Box 2
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e409

Folder 5 Wieland, George R., 1898-1904

Collection Creator::
Ward, Lester Frank, 1841-1913  Search this
Container:
Box 2 of 2
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7321, Lester Frank Ward Papers
See more items in:
Lester Frank Ward Papers
Lester Frank Ward Papers / Series 1: LESTER FRANK WARD CORRESPONDENCE, 1882-1905. ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY. / Box 2
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru7321-refidd1e421

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