Smithsonian Institution, Board of Regents, Minutes, 1853

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  • Present: John W. Maury, Robert M. Charlton, James M. Mason, William F. Colcock, James Meacham, Alexender Dallas Bache,and Joseph G. Totten. Also Present: Joseph Henry, Washington Irving. Members not present were Roger B. Taney, James A. Pearce, Graham N. Fitch, Rufus Choate, Gideon Hawley, Richard Rush, and John M. Berrien.
  • Mr. Mason took the chair. The Building Committee reported progress regardng the request of Mr. Cameron to finish the centre building, which was then referred back to the committee. The Secretary presented a plan of a building for a magnetic observatory near the Institution, stating that the instruments needed were now in the possesion of the US Coast Survey and would be furnished. Mr. Colcock offered a resolution that a magnetic observatory be constructed and $1100 appropriated, which was adopted. A communication from Captain Lefroy on the discontinuance of the magnetic observatory of Toronto, Canada was read and referred to the Executive Committee for to be memorialized. The correspondence between the Secretary and Mrs. A.J. Downing upon the resolutions memorializing her husband was read. The Secretary informed the Board of the death of Sears C. Walker and of Prof. C.B. Adams of Amherst College whereupon resolutions in their honor were adopted. The Board then adjourned to meet on Saturday, the 12th instant, at 10 o'clock am.


  • Charlton, Robert Milledge
  • Colcock, William Ferguson
  • Fitch, Graham Newell
  • Mason, James Murray
  • Totten, Joseph Gilbert 1788-1864
  • Hawley, Gideon 1785-1870
  • Pearce, James Alfred
  • Lefroy, John Henry
  • Maury, John Walker
  • Bache, A. D (Alexander Dallas) 1806-1867
  • Downing, A. J (Andrew Jackson) 1815-1852
  • Henry, Joseph 1797-1878
  • Rush, Richard 1780-1859
  • Taney, Roger Brooke 1777-1864
  • Choate, Rufus, 1799-1859
  • Berrien, John McPherson, 1781-1856
  • Meacham, James C
  • Cameron, Gilbert
  • Regents Smithsonian Institution
  • Board of Regents Committee on Buildings
  • Smithsonian Institution Building (Washington, D.C.)
  • Board of Regents
  • Magnetic Observatory


Smithsonian Legal Documents

Legal document information

  • 1853/02/03 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
  • February 3, 1853


Construction (Buildings)


Board of Regents

Physical description

Number of pages: 3; Page numbers: 429-431

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