"Yours for Science": The Smithsonian Institution's Correspondents and the Shape of Scientific Community in Nineteenth Century America

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Goldstein traces the changing relationship between the Smithsonian in the nation's capital and the amateur science community across nineteenth century America, through its "correspondents." Correspondents had a formal relationship to the Smithsonian, sending weather observations, natural history specimens, etc. The Smithsonian, in turn, sent to correspondents copies of its publications, including its annual report, filled with current articles on science. Local scientific groups, such as the Davenport Academy of Natural Sciences in Iowa, felt this formal connection gave them prestige and a sense of connection to the larger scientific community. As science professionalized in the late nineteenth century, this connection was severed, much to the dismay of many local scientific groups.


Davenport Academy of Natural Sciences


Smithsonian Institution History Bibliography

Contained within

Isis Vol. 85 (Contained within)

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




  • Science
  • Annual Reports
  • Museums
  • Professional status
  • Societies
  • History
  • Volunteers
  • Mound-builders
  • Science--History
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  • Mississippi River Valley
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Physical description

pp. 573-599

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