Spencer Fullerton Baird

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Obituary for Spencer Fullerton Baird (1823-1887), first curator and director of the US National Museum and second Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution. Read before the Fifth Meeting of the American Ornithologists Union. Provides an overview of Baird's life, early interest in natural history with his brother William, the Bairdian School of ornithology, role in development of the US National Museum, the network of naturalists he established and maintained across the globe, as his personal reminiscences of his mentor.


  • Baird, William 1803-1872
  • Baird, Spencer Fullerton 1823-1887
  • National Collections
  • United States National Museum
  • American Ornithologists' Union


Smithsonian History Bibliography


Available online through Google Books. Written by a protege of Baird, who first wrote to him when he was 14 years old.

Contained within

The Auk Vol. V, No. 1 (Journal)

Contact information

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


January 1888


  • Natural history museums
  • Obituaries
  • Secretariats
  • Animals
  • Secretaries
  • Natural History
  • Birds
  • Ornithologists
  • Natural history
  • Ornithology


North America

Physical description

Number of pages : 14; Page numbers : 1-14

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