Mary Agnes Chase Collecting Plants, Brazil

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Mary Agnes Chase, Honorary Curator of the United States National Herbarium at the Smithsonian Institution and Botanist at the United States Department of Agriculture, collecting plants in Brazil in 1929. Chase specialized in the study of grasses and conducted extensive field work in South America. In this picture, Chase is on horseback in front of a wood hut.


  • Chase, Agnes 1869-1963
  • United States Dept. of Agriculture
  • United States National Herbarium


Historic Images of the Smithsonian


Mary Agnes Chase (1869-1963) specialized in the study of grasses and conducted extensive field work in South America, often personally funding her research trips, as it was considered inappropriate for women to conduct such work. Chase joined the Department of Agriculture in 1903 as a botanical illustrator and eventually became Scientific Assistant in Systematic Agrostology, 1907; Assistant Botanist, 1923; and Associate Botanist, 1925. In 1935, became Principal Botanist in charge of Systematic Agrostology and Custodian of the Section of Grasses, Division of Plants, United States National Museum.

Contained within

Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 229, Box 20, Folder 1

Contact information

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



Restrictions & Rights

No restrictions


  • Women
  • Scientific expeditions
  • Agrostology
  • Employees
  • Plants
  • Grasses
  • History
  • Tropical Biology
  • Collectors and collecting
  • Smithsonian Institution
  • Personnel management
  • Field Work
  • Expeditions
  • National Collections
  • Women--History
  • Botany
  • Smithsonian Institution--Employees


  • South America
  • Brazil


  • Photographic print
  • Person, candid

ID Number

96-548 or Chase Neg. # 1968

Physical description

Color: Black and White; Size: 2w x 3h; Type of Image: Person, candid; Medium: Photographic print

Full Record

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