Smithsonian Institution, Board of Regents, Minutes, 1852

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  • Present: Roger B. Taney, Walter Lenox, James A. Pearce, Graham N. Bitch, James Meacham, Alexander Dallas Bache, Joseph G. Totten. Also Present: Joseph Henry, William W. Seaton. Members not present were James M. Mason, William F. Colcock, Rufus Choate, Gideon Hawley, Richard Rush, and William C. Preston.
  • Mr. Lenox, from the Building Committee, reported that the committee advised to proceed with completion of the building as rapidly and as far as funds will allow. The committee offered a resolution that they be authorized to contract to finish the building. Mr. Bache, from the Executive Committee, presented a resolution that $30,000 of Smithsonian income be appropriated to be spent by the Secretary. Mr. Meacham presented a resolution that the Chancellor and Secretary be authorized to make the Annual Report of the regents to Congress, which was adopted. Parts of the third and fourth volume of the Smithsonian Contributions to Knowledge were put on the table. On motion the thanks of the board were presented to Dr. Charles G. Page for donations of apparatus.
  • The Secretary laid before the Board the memorial of Josiah Holbrook and a petition from Miss Gilpin relative to the establishment of a normal school for female teachers. Both were referred to the Secretary and Executive Committee. The Secretary stated that since the most important operations of the Institution were conducted by letters, it was highly important to preserve all correspondence. On motion of Mr. Totten it was resolved that all correspondence of the Institution be preserved in bound volumes. The Secretary stated that the system of copyright books was defective and Professor Jewett proposed a new plan. The matter was referred to the committee formerly appointed. The Secretary asked the Board to increase the pay of Dr. J. G. Flugel of Leipzig and on the motion of Mr. Pearce a $150 raise was adopted. The Secretary placed before the Board a letter from the Royal Society of London.
  • The Executive Committee presented a report that would be in the Institution's interest to have houses on the grounds for officers, yet the expense is prohibitive at this point. In lieu of a house, an allowance of $500 be added to the salaries of Professors Jewett, Baird, and the Secretary. Resolutions to this effect were adopted as well as to extend an allowance to the Secretary as well. The Secretary stated he had no intention of claiming any previous rent incurred. The Board then adjourned to Saturday 22nd instant.


  • Colcock, William Ferguson
  • Fitch, Graham Newell
  • Mason, James Murray
  • Page, Charles Grafton 1812-1868
  • Totten, Joseph Gilbert 1788-1864
  • Lenox, Walter 1817-1874
  • Hawley, Gideon 1785-1870
  • Pearce, James Alfred
  • Bache, A. D (Alexander Dallas) 1806-1867
  • Rush, Richard 1780-1859
  • Taney, Roger Brooke 1777-1864
  • Preston, William C. 1794-1860
  • Choate, Rufus, 1799-1859
  • Meacham, James C
  • Seaton, William Winston 1785-1866
  • Henry, Joseph 1797-1878
  • Regents Smithsonian Institution
  • Board of Regents Committee on Buildings
  • Board of Regents Committee on Libraries
  • Smithsonian Year
  • Smithsonian Institution Building (Washington, D.C.)
  • Smithsonian Contributions to Knowledge (Publication)
  • Board of Regents
  • Board of Regents Executive Committee


Smithsonian Legal Documents

Legal document information

  • 1852/05/01 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, 900 Jefferson Drive, SW, Washington, D.C. 20013-7012,


  • 1879
  • May 1, 1852
  • 19th century


  • Construction (Buildings)
  • Board of Regents


  • Meeting schedule
  • Board of Regents
  • Letters (correspondence)

Physical description

Number of pages: 2; Page numbers: 407-408

Full Record

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