John Bartram Association records
Held at: John Bowman Bartram Special Collections Library [Contact Us]54th Street and Lindbergh Boulevard, Philadelphia, PA, 19143
This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the John Bowman Bartram Special Collections Library. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.
Overview and metadata sections
"The John Bartram Association's mission is to protect and enhance the landmark Bartram's Garden and House, advance the Bartram legacy of discovery, gardening and art, and inspire audiences of all ages to care for the natural world. The Garden is a 45-acre National Historic Landmark operated by the Association in cooperation with the City of Philadelphia.
"John Bartram (1699-1777) was a Quaker farmer lit with a "Botanick fire" that, over time, made him America's first great botanist. His lifelong passion for science began when, as a boy, he looked closely at local wildlife and read every book he could find. Bartram was blessed with profound curiosity and energy. So he set himself a staggering goal, make a compleat Discovery of the Native Growth in America."
The City of Philadelphia bought the Bartram estate in 1891 and turned it into a public park and historic site. The non-profit John Bartram Association was established in 1893.
Quoted text from: John Bartram Association. "About John Bartram Association." Accessed June 21, 2012. http://www.bartramsgarden.org/about-us/
This collection consists of records of the John Bartram Association, especially pertaining to its management of the Bartram's Garden site. It includes financial and administrative records, reports and architectural plans generated by consultants, photographs and slides, documentation of archaeological digs, and mailings of the Bartram Trail Society.
The financial records of the John Bartram Association include: two cash books, 1911-1938; general bills and receipts, 1930-1947; bills and receipts for plants and nursery services, 1932-1953; check stubs and bank statements, 1939-1950; and receipts and disbursements, 1953-1979. Administrative records include: board minutes, 1928-1964; two minute books, 1965-1983; visitors registers, 1940, 1955-1991; annual reports, 1937-1991; and lists and letters about furnishings, 1925-1983. There is also correspondence from the 1920s-1940s, and correspondence from the tenure of Margaret W. Evans, Board president of John Bartram Association, 1972-1987. (An inventory of the Evans section is available to on-site researchers.) Newsletters of the John Bartram Association include Broadsides, 1976-2012, and the genealogically-oriented Leaves, 1980-1985.
The reports date from 1975 to 2004 and include archaeological feasibility studies and outcome reports, historic structures reports and restoration plans, construction bids, Bartram Trail Conference Reports, Historic American Landscapes Survey, and woody plant management reports. The reports are cataloged in a database available on-site. Architectural and landscape drawings and plans, either associated with reports or separately commissioned, are stored in a flat file.
This collection contains a large amount of photographs and slides depicting plants, landscapes, buildings, events, publicity and people, and artifacts, circa 1980-2012. There are a few slide shows on the Bartram family.
Documentation of archaeological digs conducted at Bartram's Garden consists of field notes, photographs, and slides, 1975-1999. There is also an artifact inventory, 1980. Some large-scale drawings of dig sites are stored in a flat file.
The Bartram Trail Conference, Inc., was founded in 1976 to identify and mark the route traveled by naturalist William Bartram (1739-1823; son of John Bartram) through the southern United States from 1773-1777. The Bartram Trail Society is also dedicated to promoting interest in developing recreational trails and botanical gardens along the route, and the study, preservation and interpretation of the William Bartram heritage at both cultural and natural sites in Trail states. The John Bartram Association records include mailings sent to them by the Bartram Trail Society, including newsletters and general correspondence.
More recent records of the John Bartram Association are stored in other buildings in the Bartram's Garden complex, and may be transferred to archival storage in the John Bowman Bartram Special Collections Library in due course.
The John Bowman Bartram Special Collections Library is the repository for archival records of the John Bartram Association.
Summary descriptive information on this collection was compiled in 2011-2012 as part of a pilot project conducted by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania to make better known and more accessible the largely hidden collections of small, primarily volunteer run repositories in the Philadelphia area. The Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories (HCI-PSAR) was funded by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
This is a preliminary finding aid. No physical processing, rehousing, reorganizing, or folder listing was accomplished during the HCI-PSAR project.
In some cases, more detailed inventories or finding aids may be available on-site at the repository where this collection is held; please contact John Bowman Bartram Special Collections Library directly for more information.
- John Bowman Bartram Special Collections Library
- Finding Aid Author
- Finding aid prepared by Celia Caust-Ellenbogen and Michael Gubicza through the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories
- This preliminary finding aid was created as part of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories. The HCI-PSAR project was made possible by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
- Access Restrictions
Contact John Bowman Bartram Special Collections Library for information about accessing this collection.