The origins and development of international publication exchange in nineteenth-century America

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This study traces the evolution of international publication exchange via scientific and literary organizations in the United States and Europe from 1771 to 1886. The American Philosophical Society and the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia were the first American organizations to foster exchange programs. Joseph Henry, who became the Smithsonian's Secretary at the time of its founding in 1846, developed an exchange program that grew into the federal government's primary vehicle for international publication exchange. The international exchange of publications, says the author, played an important role in shaping the United States' identity in the world scientific community, and in transforming the Smithsonian into a national center for American science.


  • Franklin, Benjamin 1706-1790
  • Henry, Joseph 1797-1878
  • Baird, Spencer Fullerton 1823-1887
  • Vattemare, Alexandre
  • American Philosophical Society
  • Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia
  • Library of Congress
  • Smithsonian Institution General History
  • International Exchange Service (IES)


Smithsonian History Bibliography


Ph.D dissertation. Includes a bibliography.

Contact information

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




Exchanges, Literary and scientific


  • Paris (France)
  • Philadelphia (Pa.)
  • Washington (D.C.)


Photocopy. Ann Arbor, Mich.: University Microfilms International, 1996

Physical description

Number of pages: 429; Page numbers : i-viii; 1-413

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