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Smallwood Collection

A description of the collection at Syracuse University

Finding aid created by: LMD
Date: 29 Mar 2010

Biographical History

William Martin Smallwood (1873-1949) was an American biologist and a professor at Syracuse University. Smallwood collected books and manuscript material related to the history of science in the United States, much of which he donated to the Syracuse University Library. Most of this collection originated with Smallwood's research for a 1937 article on Amos Eaton.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Smallwood Collection mainly consists of materials directly or indirectly related to the naturalist Amos Eaton. The total collection spans 1801-1887, and the bulk of material comprises incoming letters sent to Eaton from other naturalists and educators between the years of 1817 and 1838. Most of these letters contain scientific enquiries or are related to Eaton's role as a Senior Professor at The Rensselaer School in Troy, New York. Similarly, the manuscript materials and publications all appear to have originally belonged to Eaton and some contain marginal notes. There are also several items indirectly related to Eaton's arrest and imprisonment in 1811 for forgery due to a land dispute. Many of the items are accompanied by typewritten notes and transcriptions by Smallwood.

In addition, the collection includes several items of correspondence unrelated to Eaton, including letters written by Lorenz Oken, Joseph Dalton Hooker, and Thomas Henry Huxley.

Arrangement of the Collection

Correspondence is in alphabetical order by correspondent's last name.

Manuscripts and publications are in alphabetical order by author's last name.


Access Restrictions:

The majority of our archival and manuscript collections are housed offsite and require advanced notice for retrieval. Researchers are encouraged to contact us in advance concerning the collection material they wish to access for their research.

Use Restrictions:

Written permission must be obtained from SCRC and all relevant rights holders before publishing quotations, excerpts or images from any materials in this collection.

Subject Headings


Beck, Lewis C. (Lewis Caleb), 1798-1853.
Beck, Theodric Romeyn, 1791-1855.
Booth, James Curtis, 1810-1888.
Brongniart, Adolphe, 1801-1876.
Browne, Peter A. (Peter Arrell), 1782-1860.
Cleaveland, Parker, 1780-1858.
Clinton, DeWitt, 1769-1828.
Clinton, George W. (George William), 1807-1885.
Eaton, Amos, 1776-1842.
Hall, Frederick, 1780-1843.
Holbrook, Josiah, 1788-1854.
Hooker, Joseph Dalton, 1817-1911.
Humboldt, Alexander von, 1769-1859.
Huxley, Thomas Henry, 1825-1895.
Moore, Zephaniah Swift, 1770-1823.
Morton, Samuel George, 1799-1851.
Oken, Lorenz, 1779-1851.
Phelps, Lincoln, Mrs., 1793-1884.
Rafinesque, C. S. (Constantine Samuel), 1783-1840.
Riddell, John Leonard, 1807-1867.
Silliman, Benjamin, 1779-1864.
Smallwood, W. M. (William Martin), 1873-1949.
Steel, John H. (John Honeywood), 1780-1838.
Torrey, John, 1796-1873.
Townsend, Peter S. (Peter Solomon), 1796-1849.
Van Rensselaer, Stephen, 1764-1839.
Woodward, Theodore, 1788-1840.

Corporate Bodies

Rensselaer School


Naturalists -- Correspondence.


Troy (N.Y.) -- History.

Genres and Forms

Lecture notes.



Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Smallwood Collection,
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Acquisition Information

Gift of William Martin Smallwood.

Further Eaton letters purchased, 1969.

Table of Contents


Manuscript Material


Legal Documents