October is Archives Month


October is Archives Month

  • 280 Pins

A secluded patio set in a grove of dogwood trees. #ArchivesMonth Lindsley garden, unidentified location, c. 1958. Molly Adams, photographer. Archives of American Gardens, Smithsonian Institution.

Architect Philip Johnson's Glass House, built in 1949, is an icon of mid-century modern design. #ArchivesMonth Glass House, New Canaan, Connecticut, 1971. Molly Adams, photographer. Archives of American Gardens, Smithsonian Institution.

Our new traveling exhibit with SITES Exhibits explores the rise of the backyard as an outdoor living room in the years after World War II. More information about "Patios, Pools, & the Invention of the American Backyard" here: bit.ly/1sN5Gyy #ArchivesMonth The Farnham family in their Mendham, New Jersey garden, c. 1960. Molly Adams, photographer. Smithsonian Institution, Archives of American Gardens, Smithsonian Institution.

Citation: Porte Ottomane et Grece, between 1966 and 1971. Joseph Cornell papers, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Citation: Un Santo (A Saint), 1950. Emilio Sanchez papers, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Citation: Bolton Brown to Eddie Brown, 1887 July 30. Bolton Coit Brown papers, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Citation: W.E. Schofield with a horse, ca. 1935 / unidentified photographer. Walter Elmer Schofield papers, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

A 1953 House & Garden article entreated young brides-to-be to begin planning an important aspect of their new future home: a garden. The magazine enlisted landscape architect Perry Wheeler to design a garden for newlyweds that could be developed over a five-year period; or, in Wheeler’s words, “on the installment plan.” #ArchivesMonth Design for "Bride's First Garden," c.1953. Office of Perry Wheeler, landscape architect. Archives of American Gardens, Smithsonian Institution.

Field Book Project: This drawing was created during the United States Exploring Expedition, 1838-42, by Joseph Drayton, an illustrator for the expedition. The fieldnotes accompanying the image indicate that it was based on a recently-dead specimen caught in the Columbia River at Vancouver. Since the appearance of many species can change drastically after death, colored illustrations produced in the field are important archival materials. #ArchivesMonth

Biodiversity Heritage Library: Souvenir of the Harriman Alaska Expedition, May-August, v. 2, 1899. What started as a family vacation turned into a full-scale exploring expedition at the turn of the century. What became known as the Harriman Alaska Expedition produced several publications and two photo albums. Photographs capture the appearance and status of Alaskan locales, including landscapes and glaciers, and people over 100 years ago. #ArchivesMonth

Biodiversity Heritage Library: Locupletissimi rerum naturalium thesauri accurata descriptio, v. 1, 1734. Even by the 18th century, most people believed that the hydra was a real creature. While Albertus Seba, the author of this work, expressed some doubt as to the legitimacy of the species, he declared that he was convinced based on first-hand accounts. These accounts may have actually been sightings of octopus. #ArchivesMonth

Biodiversity Heritage Library: Transactions of the American Philosophical Society, new series, v. 14. 1870. In a rush to publish his findings before his rival (Othniel Charles Marsh) Edward Drinker Cope’s reconstruction of the plesiosaur Elasmosaurus has the head on the wrong end of the dinosaur. #ArchivesMonth

Biodiversity Heritage Library: Metamorphosis Insectorum Surinamensium (1705). Maria Sibylla Merian studied insect life, and butterfly metamorphosis, extensively. Her work helped overturn the prevailing theory that insects were generated from rotting mud, thus positioning her as one of the most important contributors to the field of entomology. This is especially impressive given that she was a woman in a field dominated by men. #ArchivesMonth

Biodiversity Heritage Library: The Natural History of Carolina, Florida, and the Bahama Islands, v. 1 (1754). 100 years go on Sept. 1, 1914, Martha, the last Passenger Pigeon, died at the Cincinnati Zoological Park. She is now on display at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History, and the demise of the passenger pigeon helped spark concerted conservation efforts in the US. This illustration by Mark Catesby is the first published depiction of the species. #ArchivesMonth

This Japanese-influenced garden designed by landscape architect Friede Stege complemented the 1961 modern home designed by Russell Ford and Edward A. Winter in New Canaan, Connecticut. Stege’s design included a groundcover of creeping juniper surrounding a pine tree, boulders, and a Japanese stone lantern. #ArchivesMonth Ford House, New Canaan, Connecticut, c. 1967. Molly Adams, photographer. Archives of American Gardens, Smithsonian Institution.

In 1959 Edward Durell Stone designed this model home for the Celanese Corporation to showcase the company’s products. James Fanning (c. 1911-1998) was the landscape architect on the project. Though he received no formal academic training, he went on to work with architects such as Edward Larabee Barnes and Louis Kuhn. #ArchivesMonth Celanese House, New Canaan, Connecticut, c. 1960. Molly Adams, photographer. Archives of American Gardens, Smithsonian Institution.

Citation: Jay DeFeo mail art to Wallace Berman, 1965. Wallace Berman papers, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Citation: Jacob Lawrence, 1966 / Geoffrey Clements, photographer. American Federation of Arts records, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Citation: Actors and participants in the Maverick Festival, ca. 1928 / unidentified photographer. Konrad and Florence Ballin Cramer papers, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Citation: Robert Ament and Wood Gaylor in wedding attire for the Penguin Club's strawberry festival, 1918 / unidentified photographer. Wood and Adelaide Lawson Gaylor papers, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

October is American Archives Month (or Welcome to American Archives Month 2014 at the Smithsonian.) Discover the Smithsonian’s vast archival resources found in multiple repositories across the Institution and Connect to primary sources that cover nearly every facet of our nation’s history.

October, what a great month, American Archives Month and Autumn Fairs! See how some artists have celebrated the season. John White Alexander dressed as a mummy at the Autumn Fair, Onterora, N.Y., 1903 / C. O. Bickelmann, photographer. John White Alexander papers, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Are you (or your students or children) participating in National History Day? The Archives of American Gardens has a wealth of primary source materials. The 2015 theme for NHD is “Leadership and Legacy in History.” Here is our round-up of stories of leadership in landscapes just waiting to be investigated by young historians. #ArchivesMonth

We're mad for everything mid-century! Seed companies and scientists in the middle of the 20th century were interested in the ways that mutation could accelerate the plant breeding process. Mutation was not new, but technological developments in chemistry and radiation aided scientists in their quest to develop bigger, brighter, and longer-lasting flowers and plants. #ArchivesMonth Burpee's 1951 Annual, W. Atlee Burpee & Company Collection, Archives of American Gardens, Smithsonian Institution.