Ornithology Manuscript Collections in the
Division of Rare & Manuscript Collections
Other Ornithological Collections
Other Cornell-trained ornithologists represented in the collection include Olin Sewall
Pettingill, who became director of the Lab of Ornithology; Lawrence I. Grinnell, who
documented birds throughout the world; Robert A. Johnson; Harrison F. Lewis, chief of the
Canadian Wildlife Service; Stuyvesant Morris Pell, a specialist in conservation of natural
resources; and James Tanner, who documented the now-extinct ivory-billed woodpecker. There
are also administrative records from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology as well as phonograph
record masters and a microfilm of Cayuga Lake Basin phenological charts.
Other professional ornithologists documented in the manuscript collections include
Albert Rich Brand, who worked on bird song recordings; Ludlow Griscom, research curator at
the Harvard University Museum of Comparative Zoology; Margaret Morse Nice, associate
editor of Birdbandin,g and the Wilson bulletin; W. L. McAtee, a specialist with the Fish
and Wildlife Service of the U.S. Dept. of the Interior who compiled an extensive catalog
on common names of birds; George Burritt Sennett concerning late 19th century bird
taxonomy and conservation efforts, and George D. Wilder, who did ornithological work in
The work of amateur ornithologists is also documented in the department. Collections
include field journals and other papers of Verdi Burtch in Penn Yan, N.Y.; Isaac Farfel in
and around New York City in the 1920s; Virginia Scheetz, who became interested in
ornithology through summer school courses at Cornell; and Francis G. Scheider, a
Rochester, New York expert birder and field collaborator of the Lab of Ornithology; as
well as the research files compiled by Waldemar H. Fries for his book on Audubon.
Cornell Library's manuscript collections document ornithological organizations
including the Cayuga Bird Club, founded ca. 1913, by Arthur A. Allen and Louis Agassiz,
with charter members including Liberty Hyde Bailey and Martha Van Rensselaer; and the
Federation of New York State Bird Clubs, organized in Rochester in 1946, to serve as a
mechanism for birders in the state to share their ideas and experiences and to promote
research, education, and conservation.
Collections that relate primarily to other topics but include ornithology field
notebooks or related items include the papers of geologist James L. Dyson; Cleveland
businessman and naturalist George Lincoln Fordyce; zoologist Hugh Daniel Reed;
entomologist Asa Fitch; and electrical engineer Alexander DuBois, who developed
specialized photographic equipment for nature photography.
Online guide developed from:
Ornithology Collections in the Libraries at Cornell University: A Descriptive Guide
Revised Edition, 1999
Ithaca, New York
� 1999 Cornell University Library
Webpage last revised: 6/10/99 by jfc & clsb.