Smithsonian Institution, Board of Regents, Minutes, 1848

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  • Present: William W. Seaton, Jefferson Davis, Robert McClelland, Alexander Dallas Bache, and Joseph G. Totten. Also Present: Joseph Henry. The members not present were George M. Dallas, Roger B. Taney, James A. Pearce, Sidney Breese, Henry W. Hilliard, George P. Marsh, Rufus Choate, Gideon Hawley, Richard Rush, and William C. Preston.
  • Due to the chancellor's absence, Mr. Davis filled the chair. The Secretary presented a letter from J. Disturnell accompanying a copy of a "memorial" to Congress regarding the "preparation of a new gazetteer of North America," a letter from Francis Markoe offering to sell the Institution a collection of "objects of natural history" belonging to the late British Minister to the United States, H. S. Fox, and a letter from Archibald Campbell, Deputy Secretary of New York, accompanied by a donation of "14 published volumes in quarto of the Natural History of New York," in accordance with an act of the State Legislature. The chancellor and Secretary were requested to give the thanks of the board for this donation. The Secretary also presented letters from several "presidents of colleges" and "learned societies," commending the Institution's program of organization.
  • The board resolved that the Secretary be instructed to enter the names of these individuals and organizations into the records of the Institution; that the chancellor, Secretary, and chairman of the Executive Committee be requested to prepare the "annual report of the Regents to Congress, giving an account of the operations, expenditures, and condition of the institution." The board also resolved that the Secretary be requested to extend the thanks of the board to the Secretary of the Treasury of the United States, Navy, and War, "for their assistance in promoting the objects of the institution," to the Honorable Mr. Irwin and Mr. Twist "for their donation," and to Mr. Downs "for his computations of occultations." At the request of Mr. Seaton, the Executive Committee was able to withdraw their report in order to "include therein the disbursements and condition of the finances of the institution up to the end of the year 1848."
  • At the request of Mr. Totten, the Building Committee was given permission to withdraw their report "for the purpose of making the same more complete." The board then adjourned to meet the next Wednesday at 11:00 AM.


  • McClelland, Robert
  • Seaton, William Winston 1785-1866
  • Totten, Joseph Gilbert 1788-1864
  • Bache, A. D (Alexander Dallas) 1806-1867
  • Henry, Joseph 1797-1878
  • Markoe, Francis 1801-1871
  • Davis, Jefferson 1808-1889
  • Campbell, Archibald 1813-1887
  • Disturnell, John 1801-1877
  • Fox, Henry Stephen 1791-1846
  • Irwin, William Wallace 1803-1856
  • Twist, Mr
  • Downs, Mr
  • Hawley, Gideon 1785-1870
  • Pearce, James Alfred
  • Breese, Sidney 1800-1878
  • Dallas, George Mifflin 1792-1864
  • Hilliard, Henry W (Henry Washington) 1808-1892
  • Marsh, George Perkins 1801-1882
  • Rush, Richard 1780-1859
  • Taney, Roger Brooke 1777-1864
  • Preston, William C. 1794-1860
  • Choate, Rufus, 1799-1859
  • Board of Regents
  • Board of Regents Committee on Buildings
  • Board of Regents Executive Committee
  • United States Congress
  • United States. Secretary of War
  • United States. Secretary of the Navy
  • United States. Secretary of the Treasury
  • Board of Regents Special Committee
  • Smithsonian Year
  • Smithsonian Institution Libraries (SIL)
  • Regents Smithsonian Institution
  • Programme of Organization


Smithsonian Legal Documents

Legal document information

  • 1848/12/27 Regents Minutes
  • Board of Regents - Minutes of Meetings, 1846-

Contained within

Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 1, Board of Regents Vol. 1 (Bound volume)

Contact information

Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Institution Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20024-2520,


  • 1879
  • December 27, 1848


  • Gazetteers
  • Astronomy


Board of Regents

Physical description

Number of pages: 2; Page numbers: 51-52

Full Record

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