Smithsonian Institution, Board of Regents, Minutes, 1905

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  • Present: Melville W. Fuller, Orville H. Platt, Francis M. Cockrell, Robert Adams Jr., Hugh A. Dinsmore, James B. Angell, John B. Henderson, Alexander G. Bell, Richard Olney, and George Gray. Also Present: Secretary Samuel P. Langley. Members not present were William P. Frye, Shelby M. Cullom, Robert R. Hitt, and Andrew D. White.
  • The minutes of the last meeting were read and approved. The Secretary presented his annual report for the year ending June 30, 1904, which was read and accepted. Senator Henderson, Chairman, presented the annual report of the Executive Committee for the year ending June 30, 1904, which was accepted. The Permanent Committee presented its annual report for the year ending June 30, 1904, which was read and adopted. It reported that the bequest contest of the Hodgkins Fund might possibly come up in the Court of Appeals at Albany (NY), that the Andrews' will case continued, and that the Addison T. Reid case was decided by surrogate in Brooklyn in accordance with the Institution's view of the will and matters are left in shape for the Institution to avail itself of the bequest at some future time.
  • The Special Committee on the final disposition of the remains of James Smithson presented a report which was accepted to place the tomb on the left of the main entrance to the building. The Secretary learned that Charles L. Freer of Detroit was desirous of giving his valuable collection of objects of certain European schools of painting and of American and Oriental art to the US Government or the Smithsonian Institution on certain conditions. The board concluded that it needed more information prior to making a decision, and the Chancellor appointed a committee of Dr. Angell, Senator Henderson, Dr. Bell, and the Secretary to examine Freer's collection and discuss the conditions of the arrangement with him.
  • Includes reproductions of a series of letters from Charles Lang Freer to Samuel P. Langley and the Board of Regents and from Langley to Freer, discussing Freer's intended gift to the Smithsonian of his collection of art, and the conditions and limitations that he hoped to place on the gift.


  • Langley, S. P (Samuel Pierpont) 1834-1906
  • Freer, Charles Lang 1854-1919
  • Adams, Robert, Jr
  • Cockrell, Francis Marion
  • Cullom, Shelby Moore
  • Dinsmore, Hugh Anderson
  • Frye, William Pierce
  • Fuller, Melville Weston 1833-1910
  • Platt, Orville Hitchcock
  • Hitt, Robert Roberts
  • Angell, James Burrill 1829-1916
  • Bell, Alexander Graham 1847-1922
  • Gray, George 1840-1925
  • Henderson, J. B (John Brooks) 1870-1923
  • White, Andrew Dickson 1832-1918
  • Olney, Richard
  • Reid, Addison T
  • Smithson, James 1765-1829
  • Board of Regents
  • Freer Gallery of Art
  • Smithsonian Year
  • Board of Regents Executive Committee
  • Board of Regents Permanent Committee
  • Andrews Institute for Girls
  • Hodgkins Fund and Medal


Smithsonian Legal Documents

Legal document information

  • Regents Minutes
  • Title 20, Education
  • Board of Regents - Resolutions

Contained within

Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 1, Board of Regents, Minutes, Volume 2 (Typescripts)

Contact information

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


January 25, 1905


  • Art
  • Art museums
  • Art, American
  • Judicial opinions
  • Secretaries
  • Freer Gallery of Art
  • Smithson tomb
  • Museums
  • History
  • Courts
  • Benefactors
  • Collectors and collecting
  • Annual Reports
  • Gifts
  • National Collections
  • Private collections
  • Art--History
  • Art--Private collections
  • Art, Asian
  • Art, Chinese
  • Art, Japanese
  • Art, Korean
  • Museum exhibits


  • Board of Regents
  • Court case

Physical description

Number of pages: 16; Page Numbers: 444-459

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