Finding Aids to Personal Papers and Special Collections in the Smithsonian Institution Archives
Record Unit 7387
Osborn, Henry Leslie, 1857-1940
Henry Leslie Osborn Manuscript, circa 1879-1881
Henry Leslie Osborn (1857-1940) was born in Newark, New Jersey. He received his A.B. from Wesleyan University in 1878, and the next year he became an agent with the United States Fish Commission. In 1881, Osborn returned to the classroom, and in 1884 he received his Ph.D. in zoology from the Johns Hopkins University. For the remainder of his career Osborn devoted himself to college life, first as a Professor of Zoology at Purdue University and later as Professor, Dean of the Faculty, and eventually Acting President of Hamline University.
This finding aid was digitized with funds generously provided by the Smithsonian Institution Women's Committee.
This collection consists of portions of a manuscript written by Osborn while on board the Victor, a fishing vessel owned by Joseph O. Proctor, Jr., as an observer in the summer of 1879. The schooner set out from Gloucester, Massachusetts, and continued up the coast to fish off the banks of Newfoundland, Canada. Seven sections document the activities of the crew during their passage including the nationality of the crew, the crew at home, the routine of daily life on board, the routine of daily life while fishing off the banks, pastimes on board ship, the routine of life at baiting stations, and superstitions of the fishermen. A table of contents and list of illustrations are included, but the illustrations themselves are not contained in this copy of the manuscript.
Osborn records his own misconceptions about sailors as well as the facts he encounters aboard the Victor. Included are the figures for the summer trip, as an example of computing methods, supplied by the owner, Joseph O. Proctor, Jr., an example of a popular ballad sung by the fishermen and their opinions.
The manuscript was later published in sections IV and V of The Fisheries and Fishery Industries of the United States (1887) with John Templeman Brown as Associate Author and George Brown Goode as Editor.
This collection is indexed under the following access terms. These are links to collections with related topics, persons or places.
- Proctor, Joseph O., Jr.
- Osborn, Henry Leslie, 1857-1940
- Brown, James Templeman
- Goode, G. Brown (George Brown), 1851-1896
- Victor (Ship)
- Wesleyan University (Middletown, Conn.)
- United States Fish Commission
- Johns Hopkins University
- Purdue University
- Hamline University
Physical Characteristics of Materials in the Collection
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 7387, Henry Leslie Osborn Manuscript