Guide to the Carrie Sweetser Papers

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Overview of the Collection

Creator: Sweetser, Carrie K., 1863-1952
Title: Carrie K. Sweetser paintings
Dates: approximately 1888-1952
Quantity: 93.0 linear feet (31 containers)
Collection Number: Coll 237
Summary: Carrie K. Sweetser (1863-1952) was a watercolorist, a life-long diarist, and her botanist husband's (UO Botany professor, Albert Raddin Sweetser) devoted travel companion. The collection contains watercolor paintings of botany subjects, including wildflowers and fungi.
Repository: University of Oregon Libraries, Special Collections and University Archives.
Contact Information: UO Libraries--SPC, 1299
University of Oregon
Eugene OR
Telephone: 541-346-3068
Fax: 541-346-3485
Languages: Collection materials are in English. 
Sponsor: Funding for production of this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC).

Historical Note

Carrie K. Sweetser (1863-1952) was a watercolorist, a life-long diarist, and her botanist husband's devoted travel companion. She was married for fifty-two years to Albert Raddin Sweetser (1861-1940), professor of botany and founder of the University of Oregon Herbarium in Eugene.

Carolyn Knowles Phinney was born in Centerville, Massachusetts, on September 11, 1863. She married Albert Sweetser in Centerville on February 29, 1888.

In 1897, the Sweetsers came to Oregon, where Albert's first teaching post was at Pacific University. He moved to the University of Oregon in 1902, and the couple remained in Eugene until their deaths.

On botanical exploring and collecting trips, the Sweetsers took many photographs, and Carrie painted wildflowers and fungi.

Albert Sweetser died in 1940; Carrie lived for another dozen years, passing away in Eugene September 9, 1952, at the age of eighty-nine. The couple had no children, but they are survived by the descendants of George Phinney, Carrie's nephew, whom they raised as their son.

Content Description

The collection contains thirty-one large and oversize watercolor paintings of botany subjects, including wildflowers and fungi. The paper finding aid provides a listing of the paintings by title

Use of the Collection

Restrictions on Access :  

Collection is open to the public.

Collection must be used in Special Collections & University Archives Reading Room.

Preferred Citation :  

[Identification of item], Carrie K. Sweetser, Coll 237, Special Collections & University Archives, University of Oregon Libraries, Eugene, Oregon.

Restrictions on Use :  

Property rights reside with Special Collections & University Archives, University of Oregon Libraries. Copyright resides with the creators of the documents or their heirs. All requests for permission to publish collection materials must be submitted to Special Collections & University Archives. The reader must also obtain permission of the copyright holder.

Archival material may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal and/or state right to privacy laws and other regulations.

Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g. a cause of action for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the University of Oregon assumes no responsibility.

If a researcher finds sensitive personal information in a collection, please bring it to the attention of the reading room staff.

Administrative Information

Processing Note :  

Collection processed by Carolina Vendrell and Rhoda M. Love.

This finding aid may be updated periodically to account for new acquisitions to the collection and/or revisions in arrangement and description.

This collection received a basic level of processing including minimal organization, matting, and rehousing.

Description information is drawn in part from information supplied with the collection and initial surveys of the contents.

Additional Reference Guides :  

Paper finding aid with additional information is available in Special Collections & University Archives.

Related Materials :  

Other collections relating to Carrie K. Sweetser and/or Albert Radin Sweetser at Special Collections and University Archives include: Albert and Carrie Sweetser papers, Ax 075.

Work by Albert Radin Sweetser regarding the UO Herbarium can also be found at Special Collections and University Archives in: Museum of Natural and Cultural History records, UA 119.


  • Personal Names :
  • Sweetser, Carrie K., 1863-1952
  • Subject Terms :
  • Botanical artists--Oregon.
  • Botanical artists--United States
  • Botany--Northwest, Pacific
  • Watercolor painting, American
  • Watercolor painting, American--Oregon
  • Watercolorists--Oregon
  • Watercolorists--United States
  • Women painters--Oregon
  • Women painters--United States
    • Form or Genre Terms :
    • Botanical illustrations
    • Watercolors

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