The Bigger Picture: Visual Archives and the Smithsonian
Field Book Project Updates and Flickr Additions
As you may know from recent mentions of the project, the Smithsonian Institution Archives recently partnered with the National Museum of Natural History’s Department of Botany to locate and catalog field research materials on biodiversity at the Smithsonian, and share that information with the public. The resulting Field Book Project was born, and we now have some of the fruits of our labor to share with you.
First, our Flickr fans will be eager to know that recently scanned images have been added to a new set on the Flickr Commons: Albert Spear Hitchcock Field Books. Hitchcock was a botanist and expert on grasses, and this set features photographs he took while researching and collecting specimens for the Smithsonian in Asia, South America, and the southern United States between 1918 and 1924. These images are from the Smithsonian Institution Archives’ Record Unit 229, United States National Museum, Division of Grasses Records, and include some interesting subject matter, like wacky plants from Equador and workmen making salt in China.
Additionally, members of the field book team at the Smithsonian, as well as partnership institutions, have created a Field Book Project blog to keep you updated on new scans and additions to the project (like these recent photos of Smithsonian employees shipping animals from South America back to the National Zoo). The Archives will be eager highlight new developments on THE BIGGER PICTURE as the project progresses, and we encourage you to subscribe to the Field Book Project blog to get updates as well. And finally, a big congratulations to the Field Book team and others across the Smithsonian who are working on this pan-Institutional project, and a thank you to the Field Book Project partners, who have made it all possible.