Harry Nichols Whitford Papers (PP)

Archives, The LuEsther T. Mertz Library
The New York Botanical Garden
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Collectors: Whitford, Harry Nichols.
Title: Harry Nichols Whitford Papers (PP)
Dates: 1900-1932
Quantity: 1.5 linear feet; 1 box
Call Phrase: Whitford (PP)

Biography of Harry Nichols Whitford

Harry Nichols Whitford, (1872-1941), world authority on the economics of rubber production, received a Ph.D. in plant ecology from the University of Chicago in 1903. Following his graduation, he conducted research in the Philippines and became an authority on the native forests of the islands. His career continued at The Yale School of Forestry where he was appointed assistant professor of Tropical Forestry. Whitford studied also the forests of tropical America, and Malaya and nearby regions. In 1925 he became the manager of the crude rubber division of the Rubber Manufacturers' Association. Whitford died on May 16, 1941 in his seventieth year, in Bronxville, New York.

Six of his publications are in the collection of the New York Botanical Garden Library. The genetic development of the forests of northern Michigan: a study in physiographic ecology (University of Chicago Press, 1901); A preliminary working plan for the public forest tract of the Mindoro Lumber and Logging Company, Bongabon, Mindoro, P.I. (Manila Bureau of Printing, 1906); A preliminary check list of the principal commercial timbers of the Philippine Islands (Manila, Bureau of Printing, 1907); The forests of the Philippines ( Manila, Bureau of Printing, 1911); Forests of British Columbia (Ottawa, 1918); El cultivo del caucho en la America tropical (Union Panamericana, 1927).

Scope and Content

The Whitford papers include five bound books of student class notes from the University of Chicago; manuscripts of papers on tropical forest ecology and economics, primarily of Brazil, but including countries of Central America; and field notes from his research in the Philippines (20 vols.), Canada (2 vols.), and Central and South America (4 vols.).


The collection is organized into three series:
Series 1: Class Notes. 1900-1901. Arranged chronologically.
Series 2: Manuscripts. Arranged alphabetically.
Series 3: Field notes. Arranged chronologically.


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.
Forests and forestry -- Central America.
Forests and forestry -- South America.
Whitford, Harry Nichols -- Archives.
New York Botanical Garden Archives.

Related Material

New York Botanical Garden

CFN--Field collectors’ notebooks, Nos. 631

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Harry Nichols Whitford Papers (PP), Archives, The New York Botanical Garden.

Acquisition Information

This collection was donated to the New York Botanical Garden Archives.

Processing Information

Originally processed by an archives volunteer in June 2000. Converted to EAD in June 2006 by Kathleene Konkle under a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH-PA 50678-04).

Container List


Series 1. Class Notes.

Scope and Content:

Five bound books of student notes from University of Chicago science courses.

Folder Title Date
1.1 Plant Physics/Dr. Barnes Oct.-Dec., 1900
1.2 Geographic Geology/Prof. Salisbury Oct.-Dec.,1900
1.3 Plant Chem. /Dr. Barnes Winter 1901
1.4 Plant Growth and Movement/Dr. Barnes Spring 1901
1.5 Structural Geology Continental Evolution Winter 1901

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Series 2. Manuscripts.

Scope and Content:

Holographs and typescripts of writings relating to Whitford's scientific interests: tropical forest ecology and economics.

Folder Title Date
1.6 Brazilian high evergreen forest n.d.
1.7 British Guiana Cattle Trail 1923
1.8 Central American soils and their relation to the soils in the United States, by H.H. Bennett 1922
1.9 Classification of the forest vegetation of the world n.d.
1.10 The climatic relations of the forests of temperate and torrid zones n.d.
1.11 The cut of the forests and the exploration of Brazilian woods, National Agricultural Society 1917/1919
1.12 The economic relations of the forests of temperate and tropical regions n.d.
1.13 Forests and agriculture n.d.
1.14 Forestry benefits without disadvantages n.d.
1.15 Genetic and climatic relations of the different classes of forests of the world n.d.
1.16 Growing importance of tropical forests n.d.
1.17 Mangosteen and loganiaceae as canopy trees 1932
1.18 Maritime evergreen forests n.d.
1.19 Nature of tropical forests n.d.
1.20 Origin of forests n.d.
1.21 Plants of Guatemala and Honduras 1919
1.22 Possum wood concession of Dutch Guiana n.d.
1.23 Forest conditions of region covered by Guatemala-Honduras economic survey expedition n.d.
1.24 South America: geographic position and physical features n.d.
1.25 Statistics of Brazilian forest exports n.d.
1.26 Vegetative types of Brazil n.d.
1.27 Miscellaneous items n.d.

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Series 3. Field notes.

Scope and Content:

Twenty-six bound field notebooks: twenty remaining from the Philippine Islands, (1904-1906); Nos. 1-3, 5, 10, 13, 26-29 are missing; two from Canada (1913); and four from South America (1919). Nos. 1-3, 5, 10, 13, 26-29

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