Finding Aids to Personal Papers and Special Collections in the Smithsonian Institution Archives
Record Unit 7382
Richmond, Charles Wallace, 1868-1932
Charles Wallace Richmond Library Catalog and Lists, 1906-1908 and undated
Charles Wallace Richmond (1868-1932) was born in Kenosha, Wisconsin, and moved to Washington, D.C., in 1881 where he became a page at the House of Representatives. In 1888, he joined a United States Geological Survey expedition to Montana to pursue his ornithological interests, and later joined the staff of the United States Department of Agriculture as an ornithological clerk in the Division of Economic Ornithology and Mammalogy. After a collecting trip to Nicaragua, Richmond returned to Washington and became a night watchman at the United States National Museum (USNM). He was soon promoted to the position of Aid and then Assistant in the Section of Birds. In 1894, Richmond was appointed Assistant Curator of Birds, and in 1918 he became Associate Curator of this division. In 1929, he was appointed Curator but was reappointed Associate Curator at his own suggestion to allow for the appointment of Herbert Friedmann as Curator in the same year.
Richmond's scientific work dealt largely with problems of ornithological nomenclature in which he was recognized as an international authority. One of Richmond's greatest contributions to the field was his card catalog of generic and specific names of birds which was consulted by ornithologists all over the world.
This catalog consists of a list of the contents of Richmond's personal library. The entries document the title, author, place and year of publication of over 200 publications and auction catalogs in German, Italian, French, Spanish, Latin, and English on various natural history topics. The dates of publication range from 1657 to 1906, and Richmond has noted some of the entries as rare acquisitions. The entries are arranged alphabetically by the author's last name, and occasionally the purchase price is included. The catalog also includes the disposition of most entries to one of four repositories: the United States National Museum, the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, the Library of Congress, and the California Academy of Sciences. The date of transfer is included on approximately half of the entries, and these range from 1900-1926. Two entries are noted as having been exchanged for other publications with contemporaries. Also included are separate lists of the donations to the USNM between 1906 and 1908 in five installments.
This collection is indexed under the following access terms. These are links to collections with related topics, persons or places.
- Richmond, Charles Wallace, 1868-1932
- Friedmann, Herbert, 1900-1987
- Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia
- Library of Congress
- California Academy of Sciences
- Geological Survey (U.S.)
- United States. Department of Agriculture
- United States National Museum
- United States National Museum. Section of Birds
- United States National Museum. Division of Birds
- United States. Division of Economic Ornithology and Mammaology
Physical Characteristics of Materials in the Collection
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7382, Charles Wallace Richmond Library Catalog and Lists