Midwestern naturalists: academies of science in the Mississippi valley, 1850-1900

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Goldstein traces the rise of academies of science in the Mississippi valley in the second half of the nineteenth century, focusing on the role of amateurs in science and their changing relationship to the new professional scientists who emerged during these years. He looks at such issues as the "Mound Builder Controversy," which pitted amateurs against professionals at such academies as the Davenport Academy of Natural Science in Davenport, Iowa. Goldstein analyzes the role that these academies played in creating social structures in new settlements, and the role their science played in that social structure as well.


Davenport Academy of Natural Sciences


Smithsonian Institution History Bibliography


Ph.D. dissertation

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Contact information

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




  • Natural History
  • Science
  • Societies
  • Professional status
  • History
  • Volunteers
  • Mound-builders
  • Science--Societies, etc
  • Science--History
  • Natural history


  • Mississippi River Valley
  • Middle West

Physical description

viii, 347 pages

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