• Science in the Subarctic: Trappers, Traders and the Smithsonian Institute

    Science in the Subarctic: Trappers, Traders and the Smithsonian Institute (Hardback) By (author) Debra Lindsay


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    DescriptionIn the mid-nineteenth century, Spencer Baird, the Smithsonian Institution's second Secretary, set out to improve knowledge of the North American flora and fauna. His efforts to increase the number of specimens gathered and to ensure their quality led to a revolution in the nature of scientific data collection - how specimens were collected and processed by whom, and why.Seeking to end ignorance of northern regions of North America, Baird sent Robert Kennicott, a skilled young naturalist, to the wilds of the Mackenzie River in what is now northwest Canada. One of Kennicott's most important innovations was recruiting fur traders and native peoples as collectors. Lindsay describes their willingness to exchange labor and expertise for money, books, and other goods, quickly integrating scientific work into existing economies. Lindsay also examines Kennicott's corporate and individual support from the Hudson's Bay Company, as well as his ill-fated Western Union expedition to Russian America.Through the efforts of Baird in Washington, D.C., and Kennicott in the Northwest, the Smithsonian received more than 12,000 natural history specimens, several volumes of field notes, ethnographic accounts from the Mackenzie River District of the Hudson's Bay Company territories, and more than five hundred indigenous artifacts that were among the earliest anthropological specimens at the Smithsonian, all between 1859 and 1868. Baird and Kennicott's pioneering collection venture became the foundation for a long tradition of Smithsonian collecting and scientific studies in the subarctic and the Arctic.

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  • Full bibliographic data for Science in the Subarctic

    Science in the Subarctic
    Trappers, Traders and the Smithsonian Institute
    Authors and contributors
    By (author) Debra Lindsay
    Physical properties
    Format: Hardback
    Number of pages: 192
    Width: 160 mm
    Height: 236 mm
    Thickness: 19 mm
    Weight: 450 g
    ISBN 13: 9781560982333
    ISBN 10: 1560982330

    BIC E4L: SCI
    BIC subject category V2: WN
    LC subject heading:
    BIC geographical qualifier V2: 1KB, 1MTN
    Nielsen BookScan Product Class 3: S7.0
    LC subject heading: , ,
    BIC subject category V2: PDN
    LC subject heading:
    BISAC V2.8: NAT000000
    DC20: 508.3113
    LC classification: Q180.A6L56
    Thema V1.0: WN, PDN
    Illustrations note
    Smithsonian Books
    Imprint name
    Smithsonian Books
    Publication date
    30 June 1993
    Publication City/Country
    Washington, DC