Robert Harding Whittaker papers, 1940-1984
Collection Number: 4248

Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections
Cornell University Library


DESCRIPTIVE SUMMARY

Title:
Robert Harding Whittaker papers, 1940-1984
Repository:
Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections
Collection Number:
4248
Abstract:
Collection includes research data, course notebooks, manuscripts, and letters of Dr. Robert H. Whittaker, an ecologist who taught at Cornell University and elsewhere.
Creator:
Whittaker, Robert H. (Robert Harding), 1920-1980.
Niering, William A.
Woodwell, G. M.
Westman, Walter E., 1945-
Olsvig, Linda Susan, 1953-
Quanitities:
22 cubic feet.
Language:
Collection material in English

BIOGRAPHICAL NOTE

Robert H. Whittaker received a Bachelor of Arts degree in biology from Washburn Municipal University in Topeka, Kansas in 1942, served in the Army Air Force as a weather observer and forecaster in England until 1946, and received a Ph.D. in zoology from the University of Illinois in 1948. In 1948, he was appointed as an instructor in the Dept. of Zoology at Washington State College in Pullman. He worked for the Aquatic Biology Unit at the Hanford Laboratories of the General Electric Company, taught at Brooklyn College and at the University of California at Irvine, and at Cornell University. He spent two years at Brookhaven National Laboratory, served as American editor of the journal Vegetatio; was elected to the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; and served as vice president of the Ecological Society of America and president of the American Society of Naturalists. Robert H. Whittaker died on October 20, 1980.

COLLECTION DESCRIPTION

Collection includes research data, course notebooks, manuscripts, and letters of Dr. Robert H. Whittaker. Projects documented include field work on the Siskiyou Mountains of Oregon and California; an effort to obtain measurements of the biomass and productivity of the forest communities along an elevation gradient in the Great Smoky Mountains; with William Niering, a gradient analysis and productivity study of the Santa Catalina Mountains in Arizona; a study with George M. Woodwell at the Brookhaven National Laboratory about the Brookhaven and Hubbard Brook oak-pine forest; and on California vegetation in the San Jacinto Mountains. In 1968, Whittaker accepted a position as Professor of Biology in the Dept. of Ecology and Systematics at Cornell University. While at Cornell, his projects included a study of production, nutrient circulation, and ordination of the vegetable gradient from the pygmy forest through the Bishop pine forest to the redwoods in Mendocino County, Calif., with Walter Westman; continued work on primary production for the Hubbard Brook forest and the Santa Catalina Mountains; and work on species diversity in Nylsvely, South Africa. Also a CD including a PDF file of scans of data.

INFORMATION FOR USERS

Cite As:

Robert Harding Whittaker papers, #4248. Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections, Cornell University Library.

SUBJECTS

Names:
Brookhaven National Laboratory
Cornell University. Department of Ecology and Systematics
Places:
South Africa -- Description and travel.
Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest (N.H.)
San Jacinto Mountains (Calif.)
Santa Catalina Mountains (Ariz.)
Siskiyou Mountains (Calif. and Or.)
Great Smoky Mountains (N.C. and Tenn.)
Subjects:
Species diversity.
Plant ecologists.
Ecologists.
Sequoia (Genus) -- Ecology.
Pine -- Ecology.
Oak -- Ecology.
Vegetation boundaries.
Mountain ecology.
Biotic communities.
Plant communities -- Ordination.
Plant ecology.
Ecological surveys.
Ecology -- Research.
Ecology -- Study and teaching.
Form and Genre Terms:
Field notes

CONTAINER LIST
Container
Description
Date
Box 1
Alpha files/other files
Box 2
Files
Box 3
Files
Box 4
NSF Proposals, Reports, etc.
Box 5
Photographs
Box 6
Manuscripts
Box 7
Catalinas
Box 8
Brookhaven/Hubbard Brook
Box 9
Brookhaven/Hubbard Brook
Box 10
Smokies
Box 11
Smokies
Box 12
Smokies/Oak Ridge/Siskiyous
Box 13
Mendocino/San Jacinto
Box 14
Nylsvley, South Africa
Box 15
Nylsvley, South Africa
Box 16
Course notebooks
Box 17
Course notebooks
Box 18
Course notebooks
Box 18
Subject notebooks
Box 19
Subject notebooks
Box 19
Calendars/certificates
Box 20
Printouts
Box 21
Unprocessed material
Box 22
Unprocessed material
CD-1939
CD containing a PDF of scans of data from Whittaker's research