New-York Horticultural Society Records (RA)

Archives, The LuEsther T. Mertz Library
The New York Botanical Garden
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Bronx, New York 10458-5126
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Collectors: New-York Horticultural Society.
Title: New-York Horticultural Society Records (RA)
Dates: 1818-1844, 1872
Abstract: Collection consists of membership and dues records, constitution, inspecting committee minutes, and a letter of unknown origin.
Quantity: 1 box, .25 linear feet.
Call Phrase: NYHS (RA)

Background of the New-York Horticultural Society

Founded by William Wilson on September 29, 1818, the New York Horticultural Society was a predecessor of the Horticultural Society of New York. Orignial members were John McNabb, John Wilson, John Pringle, George Hutton, John Durno, William Arrol, John Kerr, William Curn, Robert Brock, and Bruce Willson. They became an official organization in 1820. By 1821, the membership of NYHS had increased considerably. Members voted to apply for incorporation through the New York State legislature; they recieved approval and were officially incorporated on March 22, 1822.

The Society consisted of both amateur and professional horticulturists and gardeners interested in promoting and sharing knowledge and improvements in horticulture. Their general desire, according to one account, was to concentrate "...the results of their own practical experience, as well as with a view of obtaining from other sources such information as men of skill and observation might be willing communicate".

Scope and Content

This collection consists of log books of initiation fees and monthly dues, general meeting minutes, inspection committee minutes, constitution meeting minutes, petitions, meteorlogic charts, and a letter describing the early history of the Society.


The collection is organized into four series:
Series 1: History. (letter). 1872.
Series 2: Administrative. 1818-1834. Arranged chronologically by subject.
Series 3: Minutes. 1821-1844. Arranged chronologically by subject.
Series 4: Miscellaneous. 1826.


Access restrictions

This collection is open for research with permission from Mertz Library staff.


Requests for permission to publish material from the collection should be submitted in writing to the LuEsther T. Mertz Library of the New York Botanical Garden.

Indexing Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
Sagra, Ramon de la, 1798-1871.
Wilson, William, 1756-1828.
Gardening--New York (State)--History.
Horticulture societies, etc.
Horticulture Society of New York.
Horticulture--United States.
New-York Horticultural Society--History.
Document Types
lists, membership.
minute books.

Related Material

American Philosophical Society

Letter and papers, 1795-1835.-- Hosack, David, 1769-1835.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

New York Horticultural Society Records (RA), Archives, The New York Botanical Garden.

Acquisition Information

This collection was recieved by the archives at an unknown date. It was retrospectively accessioned 13 May 1980; the original accession number given was X267.

Processing Information

Processed July 2005 by Kathleene Konkle under a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) PA-50678-04.

Container List


Series 1. History.(letter).

Scope and Content:

One letter; a brief outline of the incorporation and early development of the Society. Addressed to Robert Manning, Esq. from an unknown source. Some details are outlined in the collection level Scope and Content note.

Folder Title Date
1.1 Letter to Robert Manning, Esq. February 13, 1872

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Series 2. Administrative. Arranged chronologically by subject.

Scope and Content:

Record log of initiation fees and dues paid by members from 1818-1834 and a printed copy of a petition requesting a land grant from the City of New York with attached committee names: Francis Cooper, Charles Oakley, John J. Palmer, Jno. W. Wyman, and John Groshon.

Folder Title Date
1.2 Initiation Fees and Monthly Dues 1818-1834
1.3 Petition to the City of New York (printed copy) March 10, 1829

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Series 3. Minutes. Arranged chronologically by subject.

Scope and Content:

General meeting minutes and administrative records. Includes topics such as exhibition review, the election of new members, appointments of members, and publication accessions. Folder 5, Inspecting Committee Minutes took place in the summer months and specifically examined fruit, vegetable, and floral crops produced for exhibition by members.

Folder Title Date
1.4 Minutes 1821-1829
1.5 Inspecting Committee Minutes 1822-1823/1825-1828
1.6 Meeting Minutes 1836
1.7 Constitution and Meeting Minutes 1843-1844

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Series 4. Miscellaneous.

Scope and Content:

Meteorological observations for professor of Natural History, D. Ramon de la Sagra for the year 1825.

Folder Title Date
1.8 Chart July 5, 1826

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