PLANT SCIENCE BULLETIN

A Publication of the Botanical Society of America, Inc.

VOLUME 6   JUNE 1960   NUMBER 3

P. S. B. S. A. - The Oldest Organization of

Paleobotanists in the World

BY ALFRED TRAVERSE'

During the IX International Botanical Congress in Mont-real, a festive luncheon was held to commemorate a quarter-century of paleobotanical activity in the Botanical Society of America. Present were about sixty members of the Paleobotanical Section of the Botanical Society (P. S. B. S. A.), and a dozen or so distinguished foreign paleobotanists, including five of the seven paleobotanists who have been nominated by the Section and elected by the Botanical Society to corresponding membership, namely: T. M. Harris (Reading University, England), Richard Krāusel (Natur-Museum Senckenberg, Germany), Suzanne LeClercq (University of Liege, Belgium), H. Hamshaw Thomas (Cam-bridge University, England), and John Walton (Glasgow University, Scotland). The two corresponding members who could not be present were Isabel Cookson (University of Melbourne, Australia) and Rudolf Florin (Hortus Bergianus, Sweden).

It was especially propitious that Dr. Thomas could be present, as it was approximately a quarter-century since his past previous visit to North America had played a part in stimulating a group of American paleobotanists to organize the Paleobotanical Section. Appropriately, Dr. Thomas was elected to corresponding membership in Montreal by the Botanical Society just before the anniversary luncheon of the Section, and the honor could be announced at the luncheon.

In billing this luncheon as the Quarter-Century Lunch-eon, it will be noted that the writer, then secretary of the Section, was playing it a little carefully. I did not say 25th anniversary, because it depends on what is counted as the starting point.

The founding father of the Section in the years 1934-36, was Loren C. Petry, then of Cornell University, now retired. Professor Petry was Secretary of the Botanical Society from 1933 to 1936 and was unquestionably a "friend at court" for paleobotany. He interested several other paleobotanists in the idea of banding together as a section of the Botanical Society. Paleobotanical contributions at the Society's meetings had customarily been presented before the General Section, as in 1935 when C. B. Read was invited to report on his early studies on phosphatized plant material from the New Albany shale at the St. Louis meeting. The initial discussions that led to formal organization of the Section

'Shell Development Company, Houston, Texas were held in 1934 and 1935. The idea was enhanced, as mentioned above, by the visit to the U. S. A. of Dr. H. Hamshaw Thomas in the fall of 1934, culminating in an informal gathering at the Wm. Penn Hotel one evening during the Pittsburgh meeting of the Society.

Botanical Society Council minutes for the 3oth Annual Meeting, at Washington University, St. Louis, 31 December, 1935—2 January, 1936, include an item: "The Secretary reported a movement on the part of several of the younger members interested in paleobotany to ask for the formation of a paleobotanical section. The Council informally ex-pressed its hearty approval of such action." The minutes for the corresponding meeting at Atlantic City, 29-31 December, 1936, include an item, "The Secretary reported plans for the organization of a Paleobotanical Section of the Society. The Council voted its approval of the proposal to organize such a Section."

Whether one accepts the initial decision of the paleobotanists to organize, in 1934, or the final acceptance of the proposal, in 1936, the P. S. B. S. A. is the oldest formal organization of paleobotanists in the world (see Just, 1957). Table 1 lists the paleobotanical activities of the Society and meetings of the Section, starting with the Pittsburgh meeting of 1934.

The Section has increased from about a dozen original members to approximately ten times that number today. The short history of the Section has been a metamorphosis from an almost exclusively academic group at the beginning, to an organization including many paleobotanists employed by industrial and governmental organizations. This is in large part a result of the coming into importance of fossil spores and pollen as a stratigraphic tool in geologic exploration search, by the petroleum industry and others. Happily, most paleo-palynologists—the people who study plant microfossils—have realized that fossil spores and pollen present heritable biocharacters which are amenable to taxonomic treatment, that those who work with them are de facto paleo-botanists, and that their problems are really part of a spectrum that includes those of all paleobotanists. That the palynologists have stayed within the fold of the Paleobotanical Section accounts in large part for the prosperous condition of the Section today. I speak not of finances but of the volume and variety of activities sponsored. The comparatively large membership of the Section has permitted

(Continued on page 2)

PAGE TWO

PLANT SCIENCE BULLETIN

SYDNEY S. GREENFIELD, Editor
Rutgers—The State University
40 Rector Street, Newark 2, New Jersey

EDITORIAL BOARD

HARLAN P. BANKS   Cornell University

NORMAN H. BOKE   University of Oklahoma

ELSIE QUARTERMAN    Vanderbilt University

ERICH STEINER    University of Michigan

JUNE, 1960   •   VOLUME 6, NO. 3

CHANGES OF ADDRESS: Notify the Treasurer of the Botanical Society of America, Inc., Dr. A. J. Sharp, Department of Botany, University of Tennessee, Knoxville 16, Tennessee.

Subscriptions for Libraries and persons not members of the Botanical Society are obtainable at the rate of $2.00 a year. Send orders with checks payable to "Botanical Society of America, Inc." to the Editor.

Material submitted for publication should be typewritten, double-spaced, and sent in duplicate to the Editor.

COMMENT

There was a news release April 26 throughout the press in the United States, a rather lengthy article regarding a research fund to be called the "Bartlett Memorial Exploration Fund" which is to be created in honor of the late Professor of Botany Harley H. Bartlett. The account states that the fund is to be administered by the Institute for Regional Exploration of which Ted Bank is director.

I wish to point out that there is a fund established at the University of Michigan in 1955 at the time of Professor Bartlett's retirement which is officially set up in the Ac-counting Department of the University and is entitled the Harley H. Bartlett Plant Exploration Fund. It continues to be supported by his former students, friends and col-leagues. Grants have been made every summer since 1955 to support the field expenses of promising undergraduate students in Botany and beginning graduate students.

I am not certain of the nature or aims of the Institute for Regional Exploration, but it should be made clear that it has no connection with the University of Michigan and that its proposed "Bartlett Memorial Exploration Fund" is in no way to be confused with the fund established and supported by the botanists of the University.

K. L. JONES, Chairman Department of Botany University of Michigan Ann Arbor

Herbarium Specimens from Ghana Offered

Mr. O. B. Dokosi, of the Mawuli Secondary School, P. O. Box 45, Ho, Volta Region, GHANA, is interested in sending herbarium specimens from his part of the world to institutions in the United States which may require them. The specimens will not be for sale, but the terms under which these specimens will be sent and any expenses that the institution will have to pay will be discussed mutually.

P. S. B. S. A.

(Continued from page I)

sponsorship of activities that would have been impossible for any one segment of the group alone, say the palynologists alone or the Paleozoic paleobotanists alone.

During the first ten years of the organization's existence, scientific sessions were mostly programs of contributed papers, on a very wide range of paleobotanical subjects. In the post-World War II era, these programs have continued, accompanied in most years by field trips in the area where the Botanical Society's annual meeting was held. Recent examples of these field trips have been the 1957 trip to famous Tertiary localities in northern California, led by H. D. MacGinitie, and the 1958 trip to Paleozoic localities in Indiana, led by G. K. Guennel. Both of these trips were carefully planned and arranged, well attended and memorable affairs. In addition to the regular sessions for contributed papers, the Section has sponsored a number of significant symposia and special events. The first of ten symposia the Section has sponsored was held at the Columbus meeting in 1939 and included a significant address on the evolution of the vascular plants, by E. C. Jeffrey. In Chicago in 1947 the Paleobotanical Section, and the Society for the Study of Evolution, arranged a symposium that was a paleobotanical high-water mark for North America. It had the title, "Evolution and Classification of Gymnosperms," and featured important papers by J. T. Buchholz, Theodor Just, Norman W. Radforth, Rudolf Florin, Henry N. Andrews, Jr., Chester A. Arnold, and Birbal Sahni, who presented his memorable synthesis paper on the Pentoxyleae. At the New York meeting in 1949 the Section co-sponsored with the Microbiological Section a symposium, "Micro-biology in Relation to the Geologic Accumulation of Organic Complexes." In 1956, at the Storrs meeting, a symposium, "The Beginnings of the Plant World," was co-sponsored by the Paleobotanical Section, the American Society of Plant Taxonomists, and the Phycological Society of America, as well as other sections of the Botanical Society. All of the participants in the symposium were members of the Paleobotanical Section.

The trend in paleobotany toward more and more concern with plant microfossils has been reflected in the Section's program of recent years. At the East Lansing meeting in 1955 and at the Storrs meeting in 1956, the Section made a memorable contribution to fossil pollen and spore systematics by special programs on the nomenclature and classification of plant microfossils. At the Palo Alto meeting in 1957 and at the Bloomington meeting in 1958, the Section played host to and helped organize the Fourth National Pollen Conference, and the Fifth National Pollen Conference, respectively. The 1958 Pollen Conference included papers on an especially wide range of palynological subjects, from Paleozoic to modern. The Section has recently co-sponsored with the Paleontological Society in Pittsburgh, on November 3, a wide-ranging program on fossil pollen, spores, hystrichosphaerids, and allied fossil types, entitled, "Stratigraphic and Ecologic Interpretation of Plant Micro-

PAGE THREE

fossils in Petroleum Geology." This program was arranged by J. M. Schopf. It demonstrated the increasing emphasis on plant microfossils in the laboratories of the various major oil companies. The impression should not be created, how-ever, that the Paleobotanical Section is merely climbing on the Palynological band wagon, now that the field is economically successful. As long ago as 1941, at the Dallas meeting, nine of the papers on the Section's program dealt with plant microfossils!

The recent meeting with the Paleontological Society was significant in illustrating that the Paleobotanical Section has reached a degree of maturity unusual for a Section of a parent Society. The P. S. B. S. A. has proceeded in many respects as if it were an independent society. Its bylaws provide for the arrangement of joint meetings with other groups, such as the one just described. Membership in the Section is in two classes, active members, who must be Botanical Society members, and affiliate members, who need not be. Affiliate members have all the privileges of the Section, except those of voting and holding office. Paleobotany is a borderline field between geology and botany. Some paleobotanists who consider themselves primarily geologists do not wish to belong to the Botanical Society. It is for these persons that affiliate membership is intended. About 25 percent membership of about 120 are affiliate members. percent of the present membership of about Izo are affiliate members. Persons who begin association with the Section as affiliates often later decide to apply for full membership in the Society.

Association of paleobotanists with the Botanical Society is a most desirable arrangement. The Society imposes no burdens or assessments on the Section, yet provides a vehicle for its meetings and an outlet for publication of papers, through the Society's American Journal of Botany. The Section serves as a focal organization of professional paleobotanists in North America and provides a forum for expression of opinion, in which all paleobotanical interests are represented. Paleobotanists who are not already in the Section and who are interested in membership should write to the secretary, Dr. Theodore Delevoryas, Osborn Botanical Laboratory, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut.

Acknowledgments: The author would like to acknowledge the advice and encouragement of Dr. James M. Schopf, Dr. Henry N. Andrews, Jr., and Dr. Loren C. Petry, who have helped make much of the history of the Paleobotanical Section.

Literature Cited

Just, T., "Fifty Years of Paleobotany, 1906-1956." Amer jour. Bot., 44: 1: 93-99, 1957.

 

 

 

TABLE 1

 

 

 

Paleobotany in the Botanical Society of America, 1934-1960

 

Year

Meeting(P)

Principal Features of Meeting

Officers(2)

Literature Reference

1934

Pittsburgh

Informal evening   session with H. H. Thomas re

 

 

 

 

Caytoniales and the "new morphology."

 

J. M. Schopf, personal notes.

1935

St. Louis

Two papers in General Section on fossil plants (by

 

Program of the 1935 AAAS an-

 

 

C. B. Read).   B.S.A. Council informed of move to

 

nual meeting; B.S.A. Council min-

 

 

form a paleobotanical section.

 

utes.

1936

Atlantic City

Paleobotanical Section established by   vote of B.S.A.

Council, on motion of L. C. Petry.

 

B.S.A. Council minutes.

1937

Indianapolis

R.   Thiessen gave long paper, "Coal   Paleobotany."

C.:   A.   C.   Noe,   Univ.   Chicago;

Amer. Jour. Bot., Vol. 24, p. 743,

 

 

 

S.-T.:   W.   C.   Darrah,   Harvard

Univ.(3)

1937.

1938

Richmond

J. M. Schopf on Medullosa distelica

C.: L. C. Petry, Cornell Univ.; S.-T.:

Amer. Jour.   Bot., Vol.   25,   p.   9s,

 

 

 

as above(3)

1938-

'939

Columbus

Symposium: Notable papers on evolution of vascular

C.:   C.   A.   Arnold,   Univ.   Mich.;

Amer. Jour. Bot., Vol. 26, pp. ass-

 

 

plants by E. C. Jeffrey and G. M. Smith; Axelrod

on Tertiary floras of Great Basin.

S.-T.: J. M. Schopf, Ill. Geol. Surv.

13S, 1939.

1940

Philadelphia

Psilopbyton-Aneurophyton paper—C. A. Arnold; Mi-

C.:   A.   J.   Eames,   Cornell   Univ.;

Amer. Jour. Bot., Vol. 27, pp. 11s-

 

 

crofossil papers: J. M. Schopf, L. R. Wilson

S.-T.:   as above.

12s,   1940.

1941

Dallas

Papers on Tertiary plants by R. W. Chaney, D. I.

C.:   R.   W.   Chaney,   Univ.   Calif.;

Amer. Jour. Bat., Vol. 28, pp. 7s-

 

 

Axelrod, and M. K. Elias; nine papers dealing with

microfossils.

S.-T.: H. N. Andrews, Jr., Wash.

Univ., St. Louis

9s,   1941.

1942

No meeting

 

C.:   J.   H.   Hoskins,   Univ.   Cincin-

nati; S.-T.: as above

 

1943

No meeting

 

C.:   J.   M.   Schopf,   Ill. Geol.   Surv.

and   U. S.   Bur.   Mines;   S.-T.:   as

above

 

1944

Cleveland

J. M. Schopf on nature of coal   structure.   Notable

as above

Amer. Jour. Bat., Vol. 31, pp. 7S-

 

 

microfossil papers by A. T. Cross, R. M. Kosanke,

J. E. Potzger.   C. A. Arnold on heterosporous Bow-

manites.

 

8s,   1944.

Mar.,

St. Louis

Papers on fossil algae by C. L. Fenton, J. H. Johnson,

C.:   L.   R.   Wilson,   Coe   College;

Amer. Jour. Bot., Vol. 33, pp. 11s-

1946

(as of

 

and M. K. Elias.

S.-T.: T. Just, Univ. Notre Dame

13s, 1946.

1945)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PAGE FOUR

 

 

 

 

 

 

Year

Meeting(')

Principal Features of Meeting

Officers(=)

Literature Reference

1946

Boston

H. P. Banks on Devonian plants of N. Y.

C.:   N.   W.   Radforth,   McMaster

Amer. Jour. Bot., Vol. 33, p.   833,

 

 

 

Univ.; S.-T.: as above

1946.

1947

Chicago

Symposium on Evolution and Classification of Gym-

nosperms: B. Sahni on Pentoxyleae.

C.: H. N. Andrews, Wash. Univ.,

St. Louis; S.-T.: as above

Amer. Jour. Bot., Vol. 34, p. 597,

1947;   Bor.   Gaz.,   Vol.   rro,   pp.

 

 

 

 

1-103, 1948.

1948

Washington

I. W. Bailey on origin of angiosperms,   Schopf on

C.:   T.   Just,   Chicago   Nat.   Hist.

Amer. Jour. Bot., Vol. 35, pp. 805-

 

 

pteridosperm fructifications.

Mus.;   S.-T.: A. T. Cross, W. Va.

Univ.

8o6,   1958.

1949

New York

Two symposia: 1. South Atlantic Basin in Biogeogra-

C.:   E.   S.   Barghoorn,   Harvard

Amer. Jour. Bot., Vol. 36, pp. 817-

 

 

phy.   2. Microbiology in Relation to Accumulation

of Organic Complexes.

Univ.; S: T.: as above

82o, 1949.

1950

Columbus

First field trip, led by A. H. Blickle and M. L. Ab-

C.: H. N. Andrews, Jr., Wash. Univ.,

Amer. Jour. Bot., Vol. 37, pp. 672-

 

 

bott.   Hoskins and Cross on Callixylon

St. Louis; S.-T.: as above

674, 1950.

1951

Minneapolis

Field   trip.   Symposium:   Phylogeny   and   the   Fern-

Ptcridosperm Complex.

C.:   H.   P.   Banks,   Cornell   Univ.;

S.-T.:   R.   M.   Kosanke,   Ill.   Geol.

Surv.

A.I.B.S. Bull., Vol. 1, No. 4,   1951.

1952

Ithaca

Devonian field trip led by Banks. Symposium: Evo-

lution of Tissues and Tissue Systems in Plants.

C.: W. N. Stewart, Univ. Ill.; S.-T.:

as above

A.I.B.S. Bull., Vol. 2, No. 4, 1952.

1953

Madison

Symposium: Taxonomy, Ecology and Stratigraphy of

Tertiary Angiosperms.

C.:   A,   T.   Cross,   W.   Va.   Univ.;

S.-T.: as above

A.I.B.S. Bull., Vol. 3, No. 4, 1953.

1954

Gainesville

Gucnnel on Pottsville coal spores.   Baxter on Iowa-

Kansas coal ball plants.

C.: C. A. Brown, La. State Univ.;

S.-T.;   S.   H. Mamay, U. S.   Geol.

Surv.

A.I.B.S. Bull., Vol. 4, No. 4, 1954.

1955

East Lansing

Mich.   coal   basin   field   trip led   by C.   A. Arnold.

Round-table:   Plant   Microfossil   Systematic   Methods.

Scott on Eocene Aspergillaceae

C.: R. M. Kosanke, Ill. Geol. Surv.;

S.-T.: as above

A.I.B.S. Bull., Vol. 5, No. 4,   1955.

1956

Storrs

Symposium:   The Beginnings   of   the Plant World.

Round-table:   Taxonomic Problems   Associated   with

Paleozoic Plant Microfossils.

C.: W. Spackman, Pa. State Univ.;

S.-T.: as above

A.I.B.S. Bull., Vol. 6, No.   4,   1956.

1957

Palo Alto

California Tertiary field trip led by H. D. MacGinitie.

Symposium:   Paleoecology   of   Fossil   Floras   of   Far

West,   4th National Pollen Conference.

C.:   J.   H.   Hoskins,   Univ.   Cincin-

nati   (Died in   office.   A.   Traverse

presided   as   vice-chairman);   S.-T.:

A,   Traverse,   Shell   Development

Company

A.I.B.S. Bull,, Vol. 7, No. 4, 1957.

1958

Bloomington

Indiana Paleozoic field trip led by G. K. Guennel.

5th National Pollen Conference.   Microfossil demon-

stration session.

C.:   S.   H.   Mamay,   U.   S.   Geol.

Surv.; S.-T,: as above

A.I.B.S.   Bull., Vol. 8,   No.   5, 1958.

1959

Montreal(')

Quarter-Century Anniversary Luncheon

C.:   C.   A.   Arnold,   Univ.   Mich.

S.-T.: as above

 

1959

Pittsburgh(')

Invitation Program: Stratigraphic and Ecologic Inter-

 

Program,   1959   Annual   Meetings,

 

 

pretation of Plant Microfossils in Petroleum Geology;

arranged by J. M. Schopf.

 

G.S.A.,   pp. 21-22.

196o

Stillwater

In course of arrangement.

C.:   R.   W.   Baxter,   Univ.   Kans.;

S.-T.: T. Delevoryas, Yale Univ.

 

(t) The Paleobotanical Section has met with the parent Botanical Society of America at each B.S.A. annual meeting since organization of the Section. B.S.A. met with the American Association for the Advancement of Science 1934-1947, and in 1949. In 1948, A.A.A.S. celebrated its centennial with a special program and did not sponsor the annual B.S.A. session. The infant American Institute of Biological Sciences therefore sponsored the 1948 botanical meeting. In 1949, B.S.A. returned to A.A.A.S. sponsorship, but in 1950 the Society began an association with A.I.B.S. that has continued to the present, except for 1959, when only an abbreviated meeting was held at the IX International Botanical Congress in Montreal. The Palcobotanical Section co-sponsored with the Paleontological Society, under Geological Society of America auspices, the 1959 Pittsburgh session.

  1. The meetings are, in general, planned and organized by the secretary-treasurer. The chairman's main function is to preside at the meetings.

  2. W. C. Darrah was not present at these meetings.

NEWS AND NOTES

Ernst Abbe and Mrs. Abbe are on leave from the University of Minnesota and Macalester College, respectively. They are spending this leave principally in Thailand, but have also journeyed to Viet Nam and Malaya. The purpose of their trip is to collect flowering and vegetative material of members of the Fagaceae of the region.

Donald A. Eggert who will get his degree in the Department of Botany at Yale University this June, has been awarded a National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship to work at the University of Illinois next year in the field of paleobotany.

Richard D. Wood, Professior of Botany at the University of Rhode Island, will leave in June for work on the Characeae of Australia and the South Pacific. Dr. Wood will collect throughout Australia as a Fulbright Scholar from September, 1960, through May, 1961; and will collect in the South Pacific during the summers of 196o and 1961 under the auspices of the National Science Foundation.

Elbert L. Little, Jr., dendrologist of the U. S. Forest Service, Washington, D. C., served during the spring term as Visiting Professor of Dendrology in the Forestry School, Universidad de Los Andes, Merida, Venezuela, a position which he also held in 1953-1954.

PAGE FIVE

Basic Botany and Higher Education in Latin America

ALBERT ROBINSON, JR.

Kansas Wesleyan University

The future will undoubtedly bring a greater interchange of information, students, and professional workers in the field of the plant sciences throughout the Americas. For that reason a more adequate knowledge of the educational system which prevails in the nations to the South should be of value to botanists in the United States who might be involved in this area.

Although the principal topic of interest is higher education, a knowledge of elementary and secondary education is essential if one desires to understand the preparation which is involved for the student who will avail himself of higher education.

Generally the elementary course covers a period of six years. Many times it is divided into two sections consisting of three years each. There is great variation among the elementary schools, even within one nation. But generally they are divided into two classes—urban and rural. The latter attempt to meet the needs of a rural agrarian society while the former are designed for life in an urban area. The curriculum of the urban school is that which a student destined for the university would probably study. Any study of botany which the student might encounter in his elementary career would be through the medium of a natural history approach or a general science course. At the end of six years of elementary schooling, the student enters secondary school.

The secondary school has been almost wholly designed for those ultimately headed for the university. In late years there has been interest demonstrated in the comprehensive high school and for vocational and technical training. But the general rule is enrollment in a secondary school in preparation for a university career. Secondary schools are known variously as colegios, liceos, or gimnasios, and are strongly influenced by the French concept of secondary education. The time devoted to secondary schooling varies from five to seven years, but in either case the last two years are given to rather specialized study to prepare for that faculty of the university into which the student intends to matriculate. The other years of secondary education are more general in nature. Successful completion of the secondary course of study results in the awarding of the baccalaureate degree (bet-chiller). This is not to be confused with the bachelor degree awarded by North American universities and colleges. The programs leading to the bacltiller are fairly well standardized and the holder is usually admitted to any university on the basis of it. However, the university may require successful completion of entrance examinations. As a general rule a course in general botany is included in the secondary school curriculum. Presumably it prepares for advanced work in plant science.

The university in Latin America follows the European pattern. It is composed of various faculties which give instruction in various fields of learning: law, medicine, natural science, philosophy, etc. The university is administered by a Rector. Usually there is an Administrative Council which exercises supervision over general university policy. There is also an Academic Council which acts as a consultative body with regard to administrative problems and regulations. The Secretary General may act as registrar in addition to handling other administrative duties. Each faculty is administered by a Dean who is assisted by a Council, or some other advisory body, whose membership is representative of that faculty. All administrative officers usually serve for a definite length of time and not indefinitely as is customary in the United States. Most of the universities in Latin America are state-supported institutions although private ones are also in evidence.

The university has as its prime task preparation for various professions and is mainly concerned with instruction. Research tends to be carried on in institutes although this does not preclude research in the university proper. The faculties are largely composed of practicing members of the arts and professions who teach on a part-time basis. There is a trend at present toward establishing full-time faculty in many universities. The faculties may be housed in buildings which are scattered about a city, but recently there have been established university cities in many countries which contain all instructional, research, and student facilities. More are under construction or projected and ultimately Latin America will have a collection of very handsome units of higher education. Academic ranks range through the scale of full professor, assistant professor, instructor, assistant, and reader. Degrees held by faculty members have been gained in institutions in Latin America, Europe, and the United States.

The curriculum of a faculty is quite definite and electives are at a minimum. Courses of study leading to the degrees awarded by a faculty are definite and once entered allow little deviation from the established pattern. Instruction is by formal lecture with laboratory periods where applicable. Examinations are usually given at the termination of the course although the professor may give examinations at stated intervals.

Degrees are varied and impossible to equate with those given by universities in the United States. A very common first degree is the licentiate. Others deal specifically with the area in which training has been accomplished: engineering, architecture, medicine, art, etc. The degree of agricultural

PAGE SIX

engineer is of particular interest to North American botanists because this degree entails a course of study which more closely resembles the program a botany major would follow in the United States. The North American pattern whereby a student progresses from an undergraduate major to a doctorate in botany does not exist in Latin America. The doctoral degree is awarded, however, after the first degree by many Latin American schools. It usually requires an additional year's work beyond the first degree, preparation of a thesis, and passing of an examination.

Table i presents a summary of the course offerings in basic botany given by the universities for which information was available from the literature and correspondence. A course was tabulated as such only when the evidence indicated that it was taught as an entity. General botany and physiology are by far the courses most frequently encountered. Space does not permit a listing of the details of the courses mentioned, but they resemble in their content and structure similar courses given in the United States. This should not be particularly strange since basic science courses should not exhibit marked disparities in approach regard-less of their geographical situation.

As has been previously mentioned, programs of study leading to degrees in agriculture require the maximum effort, comparatively speaking, in botany. Table 2 illustrates

 

 

TABLE a

Requirements in Basic Botany for Degree of Agricultural Engineer.

 

Universidad Nacional de Colombia

Facultad de Agronomia

General Botany

Physiology

Taxonomy

(5 years)

Mycology

Pathology

Genetics

 

Universidad de Costa Rica

Facultad de Ciencias   Letras

General Botany

Anatomy

Systematic

(4 years)

Physiology

Pathology

Genetics

Agricultural Botany

Physiology

Geography

Univcrsidad Nacional do Tucuman

Facultad de Agronomia

(5 years)

Pathology

Ecology

Genetics

 

Universidad Nacional de Cuyo (Argentina)

Facultad de Ciencias Agrarias

Agricultural Botany

Pathology

Geography

(5 years)

Physiology

Genetics

 

TABLE

 

COURSES

INSTITUTIONS

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eu

ō

n

ro

~

G

q

to

ō

ō

C

a

s:

o

6

ā

.5

ā

rTn

o

ō

>

i~

m

~

~

~

ō

F

Univ. Autonoma de El Salvador

11

I

I

 

 

I

 

X

 

 

 

 

 

 

Univ. de Buenos Aires   .

X

X

X

 

X

 

X

 

 

X

X

X

 

X

X

 

Univ. de Cartagena

H I

 

 

 

I

 

 

 

 

X

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Univ. Catolica de Chile

 

 

 

X

 

 

 

 

I

 

 

 

I

 

X

X

X

Univ. Catolica de Santiago, Chile

 

 

 

I   X

 

 

 

 

I

 

 

 

 

I

I

 

 

Univ. Central de Quito

X

 

 

I   X

I

 

 

 

 

X

 

 

 

X

 

 

 

Univ. de Costa Rica

I I

 

 

I   X

I   X

I

 

X

I

X   I

 

X

(I

I

I   X

I   X

I   X

I

Univ. de Cuenca, Ecuador   I

 

 

 

X

 

 

 

I

I

 

 

 

 

I

 

I

 

Univ. Municipal de Bogota

11

 

X

X

 

 

 

 

I   X

 

 

x

 

x

 

 

Univ. Nacional de Colombia

 

 

X

X

X

 

 

X

 

 

 

 

X

X

 

X

Univ. Nacional de Cuyo, Argentina

X

 

 

X

X

 

 

 

 

 

 

I   x

x

x

 

 

Univ. Nacional de Honduras

 

I

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I   X

 

 

 

 

 

 

Univ. Nacional de Tucuman   I

I   X

I

I   X

I   X

I   X

I

 

I

I

 

I   X

I   X

I   X

I   X   I

X

I

Univ. de Panama

 

 

I

X

 

I

 

I

 

I   X   I

 

 

 

 

I   X

I

 

Univ. do Rio Grande do Sul

 

 

 

X

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I   X   I

X

I

Univ. San Carlos de Guatemala

 

I

x

x

 

 

 

X

 

 

 

I

 

 

 

 

 

Univ. de Sao Paulo

I I

 

 

X

I

 

I   X

I

 

 

X

I

I

I

I

X

I   X

TOTAL   II

4

I

4

1   14

1   4

1

1

4

1

6

2   3

4

5

9

6

3

PAGE SEVEN

typical programs of study leading to the degree of agricultural engineer. Only basic courses in botany are listed. They constitute from about 1/6 to 1/4 of the total number of courses required. Other courses in physical science and biology, applied and basic, make up the non-botanical portion. It should be recalled that the university student has had a course in general botany in secondary school which his counterpart in the United States has not had.

Other degrees (pharmacy, medicine, chemistry, secondary education) often require some work in botany.

In summation, the course material in basic botany in Latin America resembles its counterpart in the United States. There are indications that offerings will be expanded. The secondary student is still exposed to a general course in botany in contrast to his counterpart in the United States. The botany major does not exist: it is only closely approached by the degree of agricultural engineer. At present botanical research is carried on in research institutes which may or may not be an integral part of the university. There is a trend toward the construction of university cities to consolidate effort and faculty in higher education, and toward the establishment of full-time faculty.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

The author wishes to express appreciation for the kindness of the following individuals who supplied material which formed the base of this article:

Rector P. A. Alonso, S. J., Prof. Antonio Soares Amora, Prof. Manuel R. Caceres, Prof. Luis F. Capurro S., Prof. Osvaldo B. Coll, Dr. Jairo Correa V., Drta. Maria Lucila Diaz Zalazar, Rector Rodridgo Facio, Jaime de la Guardia,

  1. D., Rector Alfredo Perez Guerrero, Mrs. Estellita Hart, Prof. Alberto Lotti, Rector German Mejia U., S. J., Prof. Jose F. Molfino, Dr. Carlos Carces Orejuela, Rvdo. Dr. Ramon Ortiz, Rector Elyseu Paglioli, Prof. Rafael E. Pontis, Prof. Rafael L. Rodriguez C., Prof. Alfredo Romero B., Prof. Francisco Leon Salfate, Mons. Dr. Emilio Jose Salim, Dr. Alberto Sanchez, Prof. Julio B. Simon, Rector Carlos Cueva Tamariz, Prof. Ricardo Tisio, Prof. Mario

  2. Turbay, Dr. Gabriel Gutierrez Villegas, Dr. Ralph K. Watkins.

Bibliography

Awards for Study in Latin America. 1956. Department of Cultural Affairs, Pan American Union, Washington, D. C.

Ebaugh, Cameron D. 1947. Education in Ecuador, Bulletin No. 2. U. S. Office of Education. Government Printing Office, Washington, D. C.

1947. Education in El Salvador, Bulletin No. 3. U. S. Office of Education. Government Printing Office, Washington, D. C.

• 1947. Education in Guatemala, Bulletin No. 7. U. S. Office of Education. Government Printing Office, Washington, D. C.

Education in Latin America: A Partial Bibliography. 1958. Department of Cultural Affairs, Pan American Union, Washington, D. C.

Faust, Augustus F. 1959. Brazil, Education in an Expanding Economy, Bulletin No. r3. U. S. Office of Education. Government Printing Office, Washington, D. C.

Furbay, John H. 1946. Education in Costa Rica, Bulletin No. 4. U. S.

Office of Education. Government Printing Office, Washington, D. C.

. 1946. Education in Colombia, Bulletin No. 6. U. S. Office of

Education. Government Printing Office, Washington, D. C. Thompson, M. Weldon. 1955. Education in Honduras, Bulletin No. 7.

U. S. Office of Education. Government Printing Office, Washington,

D. C. New Society for Economic Botany

The Society for Economic Botany held its first annual meeting at Purdue University, Lafayette, Indiana, on May 21-22, 1960. Highlight of the meeting was a symposium on Integrated Research in Economic Plants, with special emphasis on drug and essential oil plants. There were also two sessions for contributed papers on various aspects of economic botany, and a general business meeting of the Society.

The new society, less than a year old, already has 250 members drawn from the fields of agronomy, anthropology, botany, chemistry, entomology, ethnology, forestry, geography, geology, horticulture, medicine, and pharmacology. The Society for Economic Botany endeavors to bridge the gaps between such recognized fields of science by promoting interdisciplinary channels of communication for all activities which pertain to the past, present, and future uses of plants by man.

Applications for membership are still being received and anyone wishing to join the Society should contact Dr. Quentin Jones, New Crops Research Branch, Beltsville, Maryland. Annual dues for individual members are $7.50 which include a subscription ($6.00) to Economic Botany, the official journal of the Society.

DECEASED

Harley Harris Bartlett, Emeritus Professor of Botany at the University of Michigan died on February 2I, 1960. He was born on March 9, 1886. After several years in the Bureau of Plant Industry he went to the University of Michigan in 1915, and became Professor of Botany, Chair-man of the Department and Director of the Botanical Gar-dens in 1922. He was one of the fifty awarded certificates of merit at the Fiftieth Anniversary Meeting of the Society in 1956. He was cited "for his unflagging support and encouragement of the whole field of botany and its students and for his diverse contributions to paleobotany, ethnobotany, ecology, and systematics."

Ezra Jacob Kraus, Visiting Professor of Horticulture at Oregon State College, died on February 28, 196o at the age of 74. He is well known for his work in developing new horticultural varieties and herbicides. Dr. Kraus taught at the University of Wisconsin and at the University of Chicago, where he was Chairman of the Botany Department from 1934 until his retirement in 1949. Since then, he was a visiting professor at Oregon State College. Dr. Kraus was President of the Botanical Society of America in 1933, the American Society of Horticultural Science in 1927, the American Society of Plant Physiologists in 1928, and honorary Vice President of the American Forestry Association in 1947. He held honorary degrees from Michigan State University and Oregon State College.

The annual meeting of the Northeastern Section of the American Society of Plant Physiologists was held at Cornell University on May 20 and 2I.

PAGE EIGHT

The Importance of Public Plant Collections'

JOHN C. WISTER

Arthur Hoyt Scott Horticultural Foundation,
Swarthmore, Pa.

Professor David Pimentel of Cornell University has writ-ten in the Autumn 1959 "Cornell Plantations" a comprehensive article dealing with the interdependence of plant and animal life in nature. He has stressed the fact that the human race itself is not an excetpion to this interdependence and that ecologists and naturalists must work towards a more thorough understanding and appreciation of the existing balance of nature. He emphasizes that survival in the future depends to a large extent on the successful co-existence of man and nature.

What can be done to bring about this "more thorough understanding" on the part of the public in general and governmental officials and educators in particular?

Nearly every botanical institution has problems springing from the present lack of this understanding. Officials of botanical gardens and arboretums (as well as administrators of public parks, forests, nature reservations, etc.) tell us about the difficulty of running these various institutions because of the lack of sufficient funds. Those making this complaint quite honestly believe that this lack of money is the cause of all their problems.

It is quite true that in nearly all such institutions there is lack of sufficient money. I have, however, come to the conclusion that this lack of money is not the real cause of the present problems and difficulties in any of these institutions. In fact, I believe it is not a cause at all but rather a result, the result of something much deeper and more fundamental, namely, a lack of comprehension on the part of the governing authorities and of the general public of the real and the important place these institutions and their plant collections should have in their own communities and in the surrounding areas.

In this industrial and mechanical age the growing of trees, shrubs, flowers, fruits and vegetables is often the only contact that our present day citizens have with nature. It is the greatest, if not the only, opportunity for most people to get the spiritual satisfaction of working with and trying to understand nature. The study of the science of horticulture is endless. It touches upon such sciences as geology, soil chemistry and climatology. It brings an awareness of the importance of bird life, of insects, fungi and bacteria. In a small way, it illustrates the problems of soil and water conservation, flood control, forest fires, and dust bowls of world-wide significance.

In addition to its scientific aspects, horticulture is a cultural art. It should be fostered as much by those entrusted with the task of educating youth in its formative years as music, literature, painting, sculpture, poetry and drama. Governmental officials and school and college authorities

'Adapted from an article in the January 196o Quarterly News Letter of the American Association of Botanical Gardens and Arboretums. have failed to realize this. They apparently do not comprehend the educational and cultural signficance of the interest in gardening in this modern age.

The present day lack of reverence for nature and for the beauty of the natural landscape and its vegetation and wild life is tragic. National parks are constantly threatened by commercial interests wishing to construct dams, build highways or conduct Coney Island types of amusement parks.

The finest farm lands and orchards near some of our great cities are wiped out by real estate developments. Super-highways are cut through the finest scenic areas and through parks, botanical gardens and arboretums by engineers who consider all these waste lands because they have not been built upon. Sometimes by slight readjustments of plans, these could have been spared and alternate routes chosen, but usually there would have been extra costs which those in authority were not willing to authorize because they did not comprehend or appreciate the true value of the landscape and the plants they were destroying.

There have been other manifestations of the lack of appreciation of the educational value of living plant collections. Many botanical institutions have concentrated so much of their attention upon the indoor work of herbarium, laboratory, or library that the outdoor plant collections have not been kept complete and in good condition.

Great foundations have given grants for botanical exploration or for microscopic studies, but as far as I have been able to learn, never for the purpose of improving existing living plant collections, or, for the establisnment of complete new collections of flowering trees such as Magnolias, Cherries, Apples or of flowering shrubs like Lilacs, Viburnums, Rhododendrons and Azaleas, not to mention important herbaceous plants like Iris, Peonies and Daylilies.

No one disputes that most of the projects for which the foundations have given money have been worthy. The point I wish to make is that help to living plant collections could be just as worthy. These living plant collections in the various great public gardens across the country have been a source of both information and inspiration to countless persons and sometimes generations of persons.

This has benefited the persons concerned, but more than that the country and the world have benefited because these individuals have received some understanding of nature that they did not have before.

What can botanists and botanical institutions do to bring a greater realization of these facts and an understanding that living plant collections are performing a public service which deserves much greater public recognition and support?


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