The Division of Insects in the United States National Museum

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Brief overview of the history of the collections and division, including its connection to the United States Department of Agriculture. Outlines early formation of the collection by Charles Valentine Riley and additions made by subsequent curators, Leland Ossian Howard's tenure, the appointment of specialists, and growth of the collections. Emphasis is placed on the evolutionary, economic, and aesthetic importance and significance of the collection. Includes a description of the physical layout of the division in the "new" National Museum Building (Natural History Building), an inventory of the collection, and a list of staff members.


  • Howard, Leland Ossian
  • Riley, Charles V (Charles Valentine) 1843-1895
  • United States National Museum Dept. of Entomology
  • National Museum of Natural History (U.S.) Division of Insects
  • National Museum of Natural History (U.S.)
  • United States Dept. of Agriculture
  • United States National Museum
  • Natural History Building


Smithsonian Institution History Bibliography


Includes several black and white and color plates.

Contained within

Smithsonian Institution Annual Report for 1919 (Book)

Contact information

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




  • Entomology
  • Smithsonian Institution
  • Personnel management
  • Employees
  • National Collections
  • Smithsonian Institution--Employees

Physical description

pp. 367-379

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