Letter from Alexander Wetmore to Sammy Ray, November 28, 1944

ID: SIA2010-0626 and SIA2010-0627

Creator: Wetmore, Alexander 1886-

Form/Genre: Document

Date: November 28, 1944

Citation: Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit: 192, Box: 557, Folder: 166401-166425

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A two sided letter written by Alexander Wetmore, then Acting Secretary of the Smithsonian, to Sammy M. Ray, a Pharmacist's Mate I/C in the U.S. Navy, from 1942-1945, on November 28, 1944. Ray and Wetmore maintained an active correspondence throughout Ray's tour of duty. The letter is a response to Ray's recent collecting activities, primarily birds, in the Pacific Islands during World War II. In the letter Wetmore helps Ray identify the specimens and offers advice on how to preserve and package the collections that Ray is sending to the United States National Museum. Ray was one of the many of the soldiers who collected specimens for the USNM during the war. Ray's specimens are housed in the National Museum of Natural History.


  • Wetmore, Alexander 1886-
  • Ray, Sammy M (Sammy Mehedy) 1919-
  • United States National Museum
  • National Museum of Natural History (U.S.)
  • United States Navy
  • National Collections


Historic Images of the Smithsonian


This letter consists of a front side, SIA2010-0626 and a back side, SIA2010-0627

Contained within

Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit: 192, Box: 557, Folder: 166401-166425

Contact information

Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20024-2520, SIHistory@si.edu


  • November 28, 1944
  • 20th century

Restrictions & Rights

No restrictions


  • Archaeology
  • Animals
  • Veterans
  • Collectors and collecting
  • Specimens
  • Birds
  • Collection and preservation
  • Field work
  • Acting Secretaries
  • World War, 1939-1945
  • Military
  • Fieldwork
  • Armed Forces
  • Birds--Collection and preservation
  • Ornithology
  • Ornithology--Field work


Islands of the Pacific


  • Document
  • Paper
  • Letters (correspondence)

ID Number

SIA2010-0626 and SIA2010-0627

Physical description

Number of Images: 2 Color: Black and White ; Size: 8w x 10.5h; Type of Image: Document; Medium: Paper

Full Record

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