Smithsonian Institution, Board of Regents, Minutes, 1851

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  • Present: Roger B. Taney, Walter Lenox, Jefferson Davis, James M. Mason, James A. Pearce, and Graham N. Fitch. Also Present: Joseph Henry. The members not present were William F. Colcock, Henry W. Hilliard, Alexander Dallas Bache, Joseph G. Totten, Rufus Choate, Gideon Hawley, Richard Rush, and William C. Preston.
  • The proceedings of the last meeting were read. The reading of the Secretary's report was continued, including "the report of Professor Baird on the Museum." The board then resolved that their thanks be presented to Mr. Alexander Culbertson for the "liberal aid rendered by him in procuring specimens of natural history for the institution," to Messrs. Edward T. Denig, Ferdinand Culbertson, and "other gentlemen of the American Fur Company" referred to in Professor Baird's report for "similar services." The concluding part of the Secretary's report was read, which detailed of the "lectures which had been delivered, and other miscellaneous operations." The Secretary then "gave an account" of experiments made with Smithsonian "apparatus" by Mr. Espy during the previous year, and stated that the connection between this man and the Institution began when the Secretary of the Navy directed him to "co-operate in his labors" with the Smithsonian.
  • Mr. Lenox presented a communication from Mr. Seaton recommending that a bell be placed in one of the towers of the Smithsonian buildings and stating that "a very valuable town clock could probably be obtained from the Treasury Department"; the board resolved that Mr. Lenox be appointed a committee to look into and report on this proposition. The board then adjourned to meet at the call of the Secretary.


  • Lenox, Walter 1817-1874
  • Fitch, Graham Newell
  • Mason, James Murray
  • Davis, Jefferson 1808-1889
  • Henry, Joseph 1797-1878
  • Taney, Roger Brooke 1777-1864
  • Pearce, James Alfred
  • Baird, Spencer Fullerton 1823-1887
  • Seaton, William Winston 1785-1866
  • Espy, James P (James Pollard) 1785-1860
  • Colcock, William Ferguson
  • Totten, Joseph Gilbert 1788-1864
  • Hawley, Gideon 1785-1870
  • Bache, A. D (Alexander Dallas) 1806-1867
  • Hilliard, Henry W (Henry Washington) 1808-1892
  • Rush, Richard 1780-1859
  • Preston, William C. 1794-1860
  • Choate, Rufus, 1799-1859
  • Smithsonian Institution Building Flag Tower
  • United States Dept. of the Treasury
  • Board of Regents Ad hoc committees
  • Meteorological Project
  • United States. Secretary of the Navy
  • Assistant Secretary in charge of the Library
  • Board of Regents
  • Regents Smithsonian Institution


Smithsonian Legal Documents

Legal document information

  • 1851/01/25 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
  • January 25, 1851


  • Bells
  • Lectures and lecturing
  • Clocks
  • Meteorology


Board of Regents

Physical description

Number of pages: 2; Page numbers: 72-73

Full Record

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