It’s hard for us to tell - which means it’s a perfect #MondayMindmelter candidate - but was someone ELSE writing in Spencer Baird’s Atlas? 

Right now, at the tail end of our Contribute&Connect challenge, there are only TWO pages that need to be reviewed - if we wrap it up, we’ll go behind-the-scenes at Smithsonian Institution Archives!

Give us your opinion on whether these middle lines were written by a different hand than those at the top and bottom. What do you think? Was someone going rogue in the Index of Correspondence?

Mary Agnes Chase’s Field Work in Brazil, Image No. 1931. Serra da Gramma [sic]. Dr. Rolfs, jungly bamboo slope between fazendo and Araponga. by Smithsonian Institution on Flickr.

Really, Dr. Rolfs, is that the best way to go? Up the jungly bamboo slope? It’s awful jungly is all, Dr. Rolfs. Frightfully jungly. Your way is beset with staggering amounts of jung!

Calytrocarya [sic] by Smithsonian Institution

Local number: SIA2012-3890

Summary: SIA Acc. 12-045, Box 1, Folder 2; From opposing page: “Nome bot.: Calytrocarya [sic]; Lugar: ‘Fabrica’ Rio Moju; Terrenos que prefere: Mattas, 2 e 3 degran, Barro e tabatinga; Fórma de crescimento: Touceiras pequenas”. This photograph is included in the field notes of André Goeldi and part of a collection that includes 36 black-and-white photographs of specimens. André Goeldi was a Brazilian botanist who collected in Pará, Brazil, circa 1913-1920.

Repository: Smithsonian Institution Archives

View more collections from the Smithsonian Institution.

Women in Science Wednesday!

Industrialist Vivien Kellems (1896-1975), the only woman manufacturer in the electrical industry at the time, co-founded Kellems Cable Grips Inc., in 1927, with her brother, who patented a special grip design widely used in construction, electrical connections, and medicine.#Groundbreaker

More from Smithsonian Institution Archives

She Blinded Me with Science - Writing Women in Science (back) into Wikipedia

We’ve spent the day with Smithsonian Institution Archives writing women in science (back) into Wikipedia. The event builds on previous years’ work, including edit-a-thons and the work of transcribing volunteers.

We have created articles for women (re)discovered through transcription and living science practitioners at the smithsonian. There’s still much work to be done but you can learn about our day below.

First we heard from Dr. Marcel LaFollette on the depiction and interpretation of women scientists in the Science Service photo morgue collection held by Smithsonian Institution Archives. Watch her discussion here and read more about Dr. LaFollette’s research here.

Then we saw a draft of James Smithson’s will, the work of women in science, and beautiful sketches, thanks to Chief Archivist Tammy Peters. See these artifacts here

Finally, we learned from Deputy Chief of the Media & Technology at Smithsonian American Art Museum on the best practices and principles of editing Wikipedia. Listen in here and find her slides here

Here are some of the women in science who now have articles:


It’s time for another Contribute & Connect! This time around, we are featuring the second secretary of the Smithsonian Institution: Spencer Fullerton Baird and his Index of Correspondence

There are 3 parts to the campaign:

  1. Completely transcribe and review Baird’s Index of Correspondence
  2. Upon completion of Baird’s Index, you'll UNLOCK the diary of one of Baird’s correspondents. Who will it be? Watch this space (and Twitter & Facebook) for more details. With these projects, you’ll have a window into how the Smithsonian’s early professional social network was established, using telegraph and scientific observations from around the world. 
  3. Connect with us here at the Smithsonian via a Google+ Hangout on Air (like this one) to get behind-the-scenes knowledge about Baird from Pam Henson, the director of the Institutional History Division of the Smithsonian Institution Archives.

Here’s the catch: you only have 2 weeks!  If you contribute to help push the Index to completion, you will get a special invitation to participate in the behind-the-scenes webcast.  Otherwise, you’ll miss out on a fantastic opportunity to learn about Baird and early Smithsonian history from the esteemed and entertaining Pam Henson, the director of the Institutional History Division of the Smithsonian Institution Archives!

Unidentified child with tiger cub photographed during the the National Geographic Society-Smithsonian Institution Expedition to the Dutch East Indies, 1937 by Smithsonian Institution on Flickr.

Look at the photo. Consider what has has just happened here, or what is about to happen here. Who has been here? Who will come here and and what will they do? What kinds of interactions can you imagine? Write one leaf about these or other things that occur to you upon looking at the picture. Do not allow yourself to be limited by what you see. Go.

| Write One Leaf +about +ask +random +facebook +twitter
| sponsors+You Are a Dog [ Kindle | Google | iBookstore ]

The Smithsonian Transcription Center volunteers have been busy unlocking the hidden stories from the Smithsonian’s collections - including the women in science hiding in plain sight in these digitized pages. From amateur collectors to seasoned gardeners, women made valuable contributions to the Smithsonian’s collections. Here’s what we’re learning and doing together with their information.

One woman highlighted here: “Mrs. D. D. Gaillard” or Katherine Ross Davis Gaillard in the bottom right corner of this page 

Image from Joseph Nelson Rose - Rose, cacti, 1909–1917, Accession 12-052: Joseph Nelson Rose Field Notes, 1887-1917. Smithsonian Institution Archives, neg. no. SIA2012-7984.