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|Collectors:||Becker, Herman F. (Herman Frederick) 1907-1985.|
|Title:||Herman F. Becker Records (RG4)|
|Quantity:||2.5 linear feet; 3 boxes|
|Call Phrase:||Becker (RG4)|
Herman F. Becker (1907-1985) was a reknown paleobotanist whose specialty was the Tertiary paleobotany of southwest Montana. He was employed by the NYBG from 1958 to 1974 and served as Curator of Paleobotany from 1965.
Born in Dusseldorf, Dr. Becker studied horticulture at the Berlin Botanical Gardens and emigrated to the United States in 1930. He was initially employed as a horticultural assistant and eventually became Superintendent of the Conservatory for the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. He attended Brooklyn College from 1939 to 1947 when he received his BA. He went on to study botany at Columbia University and received his MA in 1952. He then went to the University of Michigan to study paleobotany with Chester Arnold and received his PhD in 1956.
From 1947 to 1968, Dr. Becker made a total of ten summer expeditions to the Ruby River basin of southwestern Montana. These shale deposits provided him with the research material he needed to complete his dissertation and he continued to write extensively about the deposits of this area. He also was known for his work in clarifying the structure of the controversial Sanmiguelia from the Triassic deposits of Colorado.
Dr. Becker received many honors during his lifetime. He was a member of the American Society of Plant Taxonomists, the Cactus and Succulent Society of America and the New York Academy of Sciences. He served as a fellow of the Geological Society of America and as president and vice-president of the Torrey Botanical Club. In 1977 he received a Distinguished Service Award from the Botanical Society of America. In 1981 he received a Distinguished Achievement Award from the Brooklyn College Alumni Association and in 1985 a symposium was held in his honor entitled "Evolution of the Modern Vegetation of the Northern Rocky Mountains. The symposium was jointly held by the Botanical Society of America and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
This collection consists entirely of the correspondence related to Dr. Becker's professional life. It is divided into two series and was organized by Dr. Becker himself. Although Dr. Becker was employed by the NYBG only from 1958 to 1974, all correspondence related to his professional life is included herewith and many correspondents began their relationships with Dr. Becker before he came to the NYBG and continued to correspond with him until his death. There are several groups of fossil photographs with their related correspondence attached. Dr. Becker's existing field notebooks are located in the Collectors' Field Notebooks Series. Notebook number 626 covers the Bronx, Upper Manhattan, Edgewater, New Jersey/the Palisades and Prospect Park in Brooklyn. Notebook number 627 covers Montana's Ruby River basin and Washington, D.C.
Bracketed numbers  indicate unofficial Box and Folder numbers.
|The collection is organized into three series:|
|Series 1: Domestic Correspondence, 1948-1983.|
|Series 2: International Correspondence, 1958-1981.|
|Series 3: Herbarium Records, 1959-1980.|
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.
|The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.|
|Arnold, Chester A. (Chester Arthur), 1901-|
|Becker, Herman F. (Herman Frederick), 1907-1985 -- Archives.|
|New York Botanical Garden Archives.|
|New York Botanical Garden. Herbarium -- Records and correspondence.|
|Paleobotany -- Montana -- Ruby River Watershed.|
|Paleobotany -- Research.|
New York Botanical Garden
PP--The Herman F. Becker Papers
RG4--The Charles Arthur Hollick Records
CFN--Collectors' Field Notebooks
In 1983, the NYBG Paleobotanical Collections were transferred to Yale University's Peabody Museum of Natural History on long term loan where they are maintained as a discrete collection.
Becker (RG4), Archives, The New York Botanical Garden.
Originally processed by Stephen Sinon, Assistant Archivist, April 1999. Converted to EAD 2002 in December 2006 by Kathleene Konkle under a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH-PA 50678-04).
Series 1. Domestic Correspondence.
Scope and Content:
Materials in this series include correspondence concerning Dr. Becker's publications, professional memberships, field work, grant applications, student recommendations and requests for reprints. This series also includes inter-office correspondence within the NYBG Herbarium. A brief history of the NYBG Paleobotany Collections is also found herein. Many correspondents are listed under the institution they are affiliated with rather than by their personal name. Dr. Becker maintained a close personal correspondence with many colleagues, especially Chester Arnold, Roland W. Brown, Harry D. MacGinitie, John A. Dorr and Joseph Wood.
|[1.1]||American Museum of Natural History||1958-1971|
|[1.2]||American Philosophical Society||1973-1977|
|[1.5]||Andrews, Henry N.||1963-1974|
|[1.6]||American Journal of Botany||1973|
|[1.8]||Banks, Harlan P.||1959-1970, 1980|
|[1.11]||Billings Geological Society||1960|
|[1.12]||Black, Craig C.||1970|
|[1.14]||Boneham, Roger F.||1964-1973|
|[1.15]||Brack, Sheila D.||1970, 1972|
Axelrod, Daniel, 1959-1973
|[1.19]||Canadian Botanical Association meeting||1971|
|[1.20]||Canright James E.||1967-1969|
|[1.21]||Carmichael Dorothy P.||1980|
|[1.22]||Carnegie Museum 2||1956-196|
|[1.25]||Chicago Natural History Museum||1959|
|[1.27]||Cottam Walter P.||1953|
|[1.29]||Cridland Arthur A.||1969|
|[1.30]||Daily Fay Kenoyer||1971-1981|
|[1.31]||Darrah William C.||1969-1973|
|[1.32]||Davis Robert F.||1964|
|[1.35]||Dickinson William C.||1970|
|[1.38]||Doyle James A.||1967|
|[1.40]||Florissant Fossil Beds||1979|
|[1.44]||Geological Society of America||1974-1975|
|[1.51]||International Botanical Congress||1964-1969|
|[1.52]||Jepson. Glen L.||1959-1973|
|[1.53]||Kapp Ronald O.||1966-1980|
|[1.54]||Kasper Andrew E.||1972|
|[1.55]||Kosanke Robert M.||1973|
|[1.56]||Langenheim Jean H.||1968|
|[1.57]||Leopold Estella||1958, 1969|
|[1.58]||Leppik E. E.
Manuscript for Fossil Evidence for Floral Evolution
|[1.59]||Long Charles R.||1979|
|[1.62]||Mahan Alfred T.||1969|
Taggart, Ralph, 1972-1976
|[1.65]||Millay, Michael A||1973|
|[1.66]||Mobil Oil Foundation||1973|
|[1.67]||Moldenke, Harold N.||1970-1971|
Miller, Charles N., 1962-1980
|[1.69]||Nassau County Museum||1965|
|[1.71]||NYBG Paleobotanical Division History||n.d.|
|[1.72]||NYS Department of Environmental Conservation||n.d.|
|[1.75]||Pabst, Marie B.||1961|
|[1.76]||Pacific Science Association||1965|
|[1.77]||Paddock, Elton F.||1968|
|[1.79]||Peck, Raymond, E.||1970-1971|
|[1.80]||Pfefferkorn, Hermann||1973, 1979|
|[2.2]||Raven, Peter B.||1973|
|[2.3]||Read, Robert W.||1973|
|[2.4]||Recommendation for L. W. May||1976|
|[2.5]||Reccommendation for Michael R. Seidel||1970|
|[2.8]||Reynolds, Howard C.||1967, 1969|
|[2.10]||Roper, Paul J.||1959-1973|
|[2.12]||Scheckler, S. E.||1975|
|[2.13]||Schopf, James M.||1972-1973, 1979|
|[2.14]||Scott, Richard A.||1960-1961|
|[2.15]||Shoemaker, Robert E.||1966-1967|
|[2.16]||Smiley, Charles J.||1969, 1978|
|[2.19]||St. Clair, Pennsylvania fossil site||1975|
|[2.20]||Steere, William C.||1958-1979|
|[2.21]||Taylor, Thomas N.||1961, 1972|
|[2.22]||Tennessee University/Sharp, Jack||1962-1973|
|[2.24]||Thompson, James L.||1974-1975|
|[2.29]||Utah Tidwell, W. D.||1969-1975|
|[2.32]||Wilson, S. R.||1958|
|[2.33]||Wolfe, Jack A.||1962-1967|
Series 2. International Correspondence.
Scope and Content:
Correspondents in this series are arranged geographically. Dr. Becker maintained a close personal correspondence with Julius Nagele of Stuttgart, Germany and Toshimasa Tanai of Sapporo, Japan. Germany, Poland and Japan are the countries most represented in this series.
Koch, B. Eske, 1962-1974
Chaloner, William G., 1959-1980
Science Progres paper, 1965
Jahnichen, H., 1969-1979
Lorch, Jacob, 1959-1965
Kimura, T., 1968-1980
Basson, Philip W., 1974
Kozlowski, Riman, 1959-1966
Teixiera, C., 1960
Keng, H., 1966, 1972
|[2.63]||USSR/Leningrad XII International Botanical Congress||1975|
Series 3. Herbarium Records.
Scope and Content:
These files relate to the storage, display, identification, acquisition and loaning of the NYBG fossil collections. Included are lists of unidentified specimens, Dr. Hollick's numbering system (Becker's predecessor), requests for illustration material, field work expense reports and budget planning. These files were found among Dr. Becker's personal papers and have been transferred to the Herbarium Records Group.
|[3.4]||Field Work Expenses||1962-1966|
|[3.5]||NYBG Research Funding||1972-1975|
|[3.10]||Display & Storage Records