Guide to the Rolla Kent Beattie Papers
1899-1956

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Overview of the Collection

Creator: Beattie, Rolla Kent
Title: Rolla Kent Beattie Papers
Dates: 1899-1956 ( inclusive )
Quantity: 16 containers. (8.5 linear feet of shelf space.) (56,500 items.)
Collection Number: Cage 318
Summary: Correspondence and other papers regarding taxonomic investigations of Pacific Northwest plants, of which a major part consists of approximately 50,000 notes and references to literature on Northwest flora and historical and biographical aspects of Northwest botany. Significant correspondents: C.E. Bessey, L.F. Henderson, Aven Nelson, C.V. Piper, Harold St. John, W.N. Suksdorf, A.R. Sweetser.
Repository: Washington State University Libraries
Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections

Pullman, WA 99164-5610 USA
(509) 335-6691
http://www.wsulibs.wsu.edu/masc/
mascref@wsu.edu

Languages: Collection materials are in English 
Sponsor: Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Biographical Note

Rolla Kent Beattie was born in Ohio in 1875. He began his botanical career as a student of Charles Bessey at the University of Nebraska. He was an Instructor, then Professor of Botany, at Washington State University from 1899 to 1912, after which he joined the United States Department of Agriculture research staff at Washington, D. C. and remained there as a forest pathologist until retirement in 1946. During his retirement, he traveled extensively and began again the examinations of Northwest Flora which he had largely abandoned in 1912.

In his earlier years, Beattie’s position was mainly that of a collaborator of the more illustrious Charles Vancouver Piper. The work of the two tended to become so intermingled that the respective contributions could not be discerned. However, Beattie’s contribution appears to have been his knowledge of herbaria and literature resources, while Piper had a greater familiarity with field botany and theory. In later years, as Beattie began to see himself as Piper’s successor, his approach continued to follow the line of herbarium and library research. In fact, he took up the line suggested by the "American Rule" school to a much greater degree than had Piper. During this time Beattie amassed a vast compilation of notes on the development of Northwest botany, in which he examined virtually every treatment of all Northwest species from the initial "discovery," through any and all revisions. He also collected much biographical material relative to the various botanists concerned with Northwest Flora.

Beattie spent most of his retirement years collecting this material. His death in 1960 in Bethesda, Maryland followed four years of failing health.

Content Description

The papers of Rolla Kent Beattie consist of his correspondence relative to Northwest botany and his compilation of notes and references to literature on Northwest plants and botanists. Included in his letterbooks are drafts of articles about the spread of introduced plants, as well as considerable correspondence about plants sent to Washington State University by the public for identification.

Use of the Collection

Restrictions on Access :  

This collection is open for research use.

Preferred Citation :  

[Item Description]. Cage 318, Rolla Kent Beattie Papers. Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections, Washington State University Libraries, Pullman, WA.

Administrative Information

Arrangement :

Beattie’s correspondence is arranged in chronological sequence. The materials in his notes are divided into foldered materials, arranged in an alphabetical sequence of biographical subjects, and a card file which contains four parts. First, a section on Northwest flora, arranged according to a standard botanical classification arrangement, with species ordered alphabetically within each genus. A second section consists of biographical information arranged alphabetically by the names of Northwest botanists. A third section consists of extensive notes on David Douglas. Fourth is a partial geographic index of Northwest plants, arranged according to region.

Custodial History :  

The papers of R. Kent Beattie, 1875-1960, were donated to the Washington State University Herbarium during the period from 1956 through 1960 by Mr. Beattie.

Acquisition Information :  

The papers, along with those of four other Pacific Northwest botanists, were donated to the Washington State Library in 1975 by the Marion Ownbey Herbarium on the Washington State Campus.

Additional Reference Guides :  

A print index to the correspondence can be found in:

Northwest botanical manuscripts : an indexed register of the papers, 1867-1957, of Wilhelm Nikolaus Suksdorf, William Conklin Cusick, Charles Vancouver Piper, Rolla Kent Beattie, and Harold St. John in the Washington State University Library. Washington State University Library. Pullman : The University, 1976.

Related Materials :  

Additional Botanical manuscripts in MASC may be found in the following collections:

Cage 53 Botanical papers, 1881-1973

Cage 316 Cusick, William Conklin Papers, 1906-1924

Cage 317 Piper, Charles Vancouver Papers, 1888-1926

Cage 319 St. John, Harold Papers, 1912-1957

Cage 315 Suksdorf, Wilhelm Nicolaus Papers, 1867-1935


Detailed Description of the Collection

The following section contains a detailed listing of the materials in the collection.

Series 1: Correspondence, 1899-1956
Container(s)
Description
Box/Folder
1 / 1 1899-1906
175 items.
1 / 2 1907-1910
225 items.
1 / 3 1911-1915
180 items.
1 / 4 1915-1956
150 items.
2 / 5 Letterbook, , May 1904-July 1905
1 volume.
2 / 6 Letterbook, , April 1906-Jan. 1907
1 volume.

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Series 2: Northwest Botany Notes
Container(s)
Description
container
3 Abbot, E. K.
3 Abrams, LeRoy
3 Agassiz, Alexander
3 Agricultural History
3 Allen, Miss A. J.
3 Anderson, A. C.
3 Applegate, Elmer J.
3 Austin, Mrs. R. M.
3 Bailey, Liberty Hyde
3 Ball, John
3 Banks, Sir Joseph
3 Barclay, George
3 Barett, Mrs. P. G.
3 Barnhart, John Hendley (biographies)
3 Baronoff, A. A.
3 Bartram, William
3 Baumgarten, Hermann
3 Bebb, M. S.
3 Beechey, F. W.
3 Belcher, Capt. Sir Edward
3 Benson, Lyman
3 Bentham, George
3 Berthand, E. L.
3 Bessey, Charles
3 Bethel, Ellsworth
3 Bigelow, Jacob
3 Billings
3 Blake, William P.
3 Blasdale, W. C.
3 Bloodgood, C. Delavan (Sitka)
3 Bolander, Hendry N.
3 Bolton, H. E. (ANZA)
3 Bongard (at Nootka)
3 Bonneville, B. L. E.
3 Brackenridge, W. D.
3 Bradbury, John
3 Brainerd, Ezra
3 Brandegee, T. S. and Brandegee, Katherine
3 Brandel, Joseph
3 Brewer, William H.
3 Britton, Nathaniel Lord
3 Brodie, David
3 Brown, Jennie Broughton
3 Brown, Robert, of Campster
4 Brown, Robert, of Campster
4 Burke, Joseph
4 Butters, Frederick King
4 Caldwell, Joseph
4 Cannon, Evalina
4 Carruth, W. W.
4 Chamissot de Boncourt, Adlebertus
4 Christ, J. H.
4 Christensen, Carl
4 Clayton, John
4 Collins, J. Franklin
4 Collinson, Peter
4 Coltman-Rogers, Charles
4 Compton, T. B.
4 Cook, Capt. James
4 Cooley, J. G.
4 Cooper, J. G.
4 Coulter, John Merle
4 Coville, Frederick
4 Curtis' Botanical Magazine
4 Cusick, William Conklin
4 Dachnowski-Stokes, A. O.
4 Damon, Samuel
4 Dana, James D.
4 Darlington, H. T.
4 David, Abbe
4 Davis, Mrs. N. J.
4 Dayton, William a.
4 Delacour, Jean
4 Delano, Amasa
4 Demofras, Duflot
4 Dewey, Chester
4 Dietz, H. F.
4 Diller, J. S.
5 Douglas, David
4
6 Douglas, Sir James
6 Douglas, Robert
6 Douglas, William O.
6 Donaldson, A. B.
6 Drake, Capt. Francis
6 Drummond, Thomas
6 Eastwood, Alice
6 Eaton, Amos
6 Eaton, Walter P.
6 Edwards' Botanical Register
6 Eggleston, Willard W.
6 Elmer, A. P. E.
6 Englemann, George
6 Epling, Carl
6 Ermantinger, Edward
6 Eschscholtz, Johan
6 Espinoza y Tello, Jose
6 Etches, Jon
6 Evans, John
6 Fernald, M. L.
6 Findler, Augustus
6 Flett, J. B.
6 Forbes, Charles
6 Franchere, Gabriel
6 Fraser, Simon
6 Fremont, John C.
6 Frye, Else M.
6 Fuller, George W.
6 Gabrielson, Ira N.
6 Gairdner, Meredith
6 Gambel, William
6 Gannett
6 Gardners' Magazine (London)
6 Garry, Nicholas
6 Geiser, Samuel Wood
6 Geology of the Pacific Northwest
6 Geyer, Karl Andreas
6 Ghent, W. J.
6 Gibbs, George
6 Golder, Frank A.
6 Good
6 Gorman, M. W.
6 Gould, Dorothy Fay
6 Gray, Asa
6 Gray, Capt. Robert
6 Gray Herbarium
7 Greene, E. L.
7 Griffith, David
7 Haenke, Thaddaeus
7 Hancock, Samuel
7 Harshberger, John William
7 Hartwig, Theodor
7 Hatch, W. R.
7 Hayden, F. V.
7 Hecata, Bruno
7 Heller, Amos Arthur
7 Hemenway, Ansel
7 Henderson, L. F.
7 Henky, Alexander
7 Hilgard, Eugene Waldemar
7 Hitchcock, A. S.
7 Holway, E. W. D.
7 Hone, D. S.
7 Hooker, Joseph Dalton
7 Hooker, William Jackson
7 Horsford, F. H.
7 Hough, J. B.
7 House, Homer D.
7 Howard, L. O.
7 Howell, John T.
7 Howell, Thomas and Howell, Joseph
7 Hudson's Bay Company
7 Hulten, Eric
7 Ingram, D. C.
7 James, Edwin
7 Jefferson, Thomas
7 Jennings, O. E.
7 Jepson, Willis Linn
7 Jewitt, S.
7 Johnson, J. E.
7 Jones, George Neville
7 Jones, Marcus E.
7 Juan de Fuca
7 Judson, Katherine
7 Kalm, Peter
7 Kauffman, Karl F.
7 Kelley, Hall J.
7 Kellogg, Albert
7 Kew Collections
7 Kimmel, Edward
7 Kin, Mattias
7 Kip, Lawrence
7 Kleeberger, George R.
7 Kotzebue, Otto von
7 La Gasca y Segura, Mariano
7 La Perouse
7 Lake and Hull
7 Lamson-Scribner, F.
7 Laut, Agnes
7 Leiberg, John B.
8 Lemmon, J. G.
8 Lesquereux, Leo
8 Lewis, Meriwether (and Clark, William)
8 Lindley, John
8 Linnean Society of London
8 Linnaeus, Carolus
8 Lobb, William
8 Luders, F. G. J.
8 Lutke, Frederic
8 Lyall, David
8 Lyman, W. D.
8 Lyons, Maj. H. G.
8 Mackenzie, Alexander
8 McKenzie, Donald
8 Macoun, John
8 Malispina Expedition
8 Mayne, R. N.
8 Marcy, Oliver
8 Maxon, William R.
8 Meader, James
8 Meany, Edmond S.
8 Meares, John
8 Meehan, Thomas
8 Meinecke, E. P.
8 Menzies, Archibald
8 Merriam, C. Hart
8 Merrille, C. D.
8 Mertens, Henry
8 Meyer, Frank N.
8 Michaux, Andre
8 Michaux, Francois Andre
8 Miyabe, Kingo
8 Mocino, D. Jose Mariano
8 Mourelle, Don Francisco Antonio
8 Munro, William
8 Murchison, Sir Roberick
8 Murray, Andrew
8 National Herbarium
8 Nautical Magazine
8 Nee, Luis
8 Neilson, Thomas G.
8 Nelson, Aven
8 Nelson, David
8 Nevius, Reuben Denton
8 Newberry, J. S.
8 Newcombe, C. F.
8 Nordhorr, Charles
8 Northwest Passage (by K. Roberts)
8 Nuttall, Thomas
8 Page, Elizabeth
8 Pallas, P. S.
8 Palliser, John
8 Palmer, Edward
8 Parish, S. B.
9 Parker, Rev. Samuel
9 Parry, C. C.
9 Paullin, Charles O.
9 Paxton, Sir Joseph
9 Peck, Morton E.
9 Pennell, Francis W.
9 Perez Expedition
9 Pickering, Charles
9 Pinch, Jeremy
9 Piper, Charles V. (General Information)
9 Piper, Charles V. (Index to Flora of Washington)
9 Piper, Charles V. (Herbarium)
4
10 Piper, Charles V. (Herbarium)
2
10 Piper, Charles V. (Index to notes, pp. 1-1131)
10 Plant introduction into America
10 Portlock, Capt. Nathaniel
10 Postels, Alexander
10 Pringle, Cyrus G.
10 Pursh, Frederick
10 Rafinesque, C. S.
10 Ramsbottom, John
10 Rees, Abraham
10 Rich, William (Hutton)
10 Richards, C. Audrey
10 Rigg, George B.
10 Rogers, H. Thomas
10 Roll, Julius
10 Rosendahl, C. O.
10 Rugel, Ferdinand
10 Ruiz, Hipolito
10 Rusby, H. H.
10 St. John, Harold
10 Sandberg, J. H.
11 Sargent, Charles Sprague
11 Schafer, Joseph
11 Scouler, John
11 Scribner, Frank (see Lamson-Scribner)
11 Seeman, Berthold
11 Seese, Martin
11 Shinn, Charles H.
11 Simpson, George
11 Smet, P. J. de
11 Smith, Alexander
11 Smith, Charles Piper
11 Smith, Jedediah
11 Sorel, Henry Andrew
11 Spalding, Rev. H. H.
11 Spaulding, Perley
11 Sperlin, O. B.
11 Spillman, W. J.
11 Sperlin, O. B.
11 Spillman, W. J.
11 Stacey, J. W.
11 Stevens, Isaac I.
11 Stevens, Neil E.
11 Stevens, O. A.
11 Stewart, Sir William G. P.
11 Strange, James
11 Sudworth, George B.
11 Suksdorf, Wilhelm
11 Swallen, Jason R.
11 Swallow, Prof.
11 Swan, James
11 Sweetser, A. R.
11 Thompson, David
11 Thorington, J. Monroe
11 Tidestrom, Ivar T.
11 Tolmie, W. F.
11 Torrey, John
11 Tuckerman, Edward
11 Tweedy, Frank
11 Vancouver, George
11 Vancouver Island
11 Vasey, George and George R. Vizcaino
11 Wagner, Henry R.
11 Whetzel, Herbert H.
11 Wildox, E. T.
11 Whited, Kirk
11 Wilkes, Expedition
11 Wilks, W.
11 Willson, Beckles
11 Wilson, Ernest
11 Winsor, Justin
11 Wood, Alonzo
11 Wood, C. B.
11 Wood, C. W.
11 Work, John
11 Wright, Charles
11 Wyeth, Nathaniel
11 Wynd, F. Lyle
11 Young Naturalists Society of Seattle
11 Zeller, S. M.
12 Type Localities
4
Geographic Notes:
container
13 Washington State
13 Oregon
13 Idaho
13 Wyoming
13 British Columbia (Nootka)
13 California
13 Northwest America localities
Personal Notes
container
14 British Museum (South Kensington)
14 Washington State University Herbarium
14 University of Idaho, Southern Branch, Herbarium
14 University of Oregon
14 Texas
14 Rusby Herbarium
14 California Academy of Sciences
14 Colorado Agriculutural and Mechanical College Herbarium
14 Collection in the Pacific Northwest, 1946
14 Miscellaneous notes of Northwest botany
14 Notes for Piper and Beattie's Floras, 1914-1915
15 Berberidaceae
15 Circaea
15 Fagacaea
15 Impatiens
15 Mimulus
15 Tobacco
15 Plants to be looked for in the Siskiyou Mountains
Card File
16 / 1-6 Northwest Flora
16 / 6-7 Biographical Notes
16 / 7 David Douglas Notes
16 / 7-8 Geographic Notes

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Subjects

This collection is indexed under the following headings in the online catalog. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons, or places should search the catalog using these headings.

  • Personal Names :
  • Beattie, R. Kent (Rolla Kent), b. 1875 --Archives  ( creator)
  • Bessey, Charles E. (Charles Edwin), 1845-1915
  • Henderson, Louis Fourniquet, 1853-
  • Nelson, Aven, 1859-1952
  • Piper, Charles V. (Charles Vancouver), 1867-1926
  • St. John, Harold, 1892-
  • Suksdorf, Wilhelm, 1850-1932
  • Sweetser, Albert Raddin
  • Subject Terms :
  • Botanists -- United States--Correspondence
  • Botany -- Research--Northwest, Pacific

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