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Lewis R. Gibbes papers

 Collection
Identifier: Mss 0020

Collection Overview

Biographical materials, writings, materials relating to the Elliott Society of Science and Art, astronomical charts, specimens, prints, and other assorted papers of Lewis R. Gibbes, Professor of mathematics, astronomy, and physics at the College of Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, from 1838-1892. Biographical materials include assorted class notes, pamphlets, miscellaneous receipts for room and board, and other ephemera relating to Gibbes' studies in France. Also included is a glass plate negative portrait of Gibbes, assorted obituaries, eulogies and memorials on his death, and a typescript for the play "Lewis Gibbes: A Legend for Tomorrow," written by Emmett Robinson for the centennial anniversary of the College of Charleston. Gibbes' writings make up a majority of the papers and consist of published papers and newspaper articles (collected into several scrapbooks) on his scientific work, natural history, inventions, mathematics, science, astronomy, natural history, poetry, local events, the Great Comet of 1861, and the Civil War for assorted newspapers and scientific journals including the Charleston Mercury, the Charleston Daily Courier, and the Proceedings of the Elliott Society of Natural History of Charleston, South Carolina. The are also assorted Elliott Society of Natural History materials including a handwritten membership list, handwritten reports of the corresponding secretary, foreign science society memberships, issues of the Proceedings of the Elliott Society of Natural History of Charleston, South Carolina, a broadside re reorganization, and a notice of meeting. Astronomical charts and calculations consist of a number of charts diagramming the parallel of declination, time, and other calculations of total and partial eclipses of the sun and moon, including additional calculations on the verso of each, as well as assorted miscellaneous calculations. There are also assorted cartes de visites, cabinet cards, and daguerreotype images of prominent physicians, naturalists, botanists, biologists, geologists, and astronomers including a daguerreotype of the Swiss-American biologist and geologist Louis Agassiz and a carte de visite of Confederate General Robert E. Lee. Prints collected by Gibbes include assorted images of French aristocracy, physicians, politicians, generals, and artists as well as prints of the Turkish-Armenian and Crimean wars, assorted maps of France (including several street maps of Paris), the Neva river, the Black Sea, and North America. There are also prints of assorted European and American locales including images of Wales, United Kingdom, and Paris, France. Correspondence consists of drafts of two letters (1890 July 14 and December 6) from Gibbes to C. S. Sargent at the Arnold Arboretum in Brookline, Massachusetts, stating that Gibbes is sending Sargent papers for publication. Gibbes also asks Sargent for plant specimens. Also included is a volume containing copies of letters in French with an index. Copies of letters are to family members and others in Charleston, South Carolina, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Havana, Cuba, Paris, France, and elsewhere.

Dates

  • 1800s-1893, 1937

Creator

Language of Material

Materials English and French

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research.

Copyright Notice

The nature of the College of Charleston's archival holdings means that copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine despite reasonable efforts. Special Collections claims only physical ownership of most archival materials.

The materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study, pursuant to U.S. copyright law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research or otherwise should be fully credited with the source.

Biographical Note

Lewis R. Gibbes (1810-1894) was the Professor of mathematics, astronomy, and physics at the College of Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, from 1837 to 1892. Gibbes studied medicine in the United States and in Paris and was the author of numerous journal articles on astronomy, natural history, and related subjects. He studied the classification of chemical elements, invented scientific instruments, and served as an officer of the Elliott Society of Natural History for thirty years.

Extent

4.35 linear feet (5 document boxes, 1 slim document box, 1 artifact box, 9 oversize paper folders, 1 volume)

Abstract

Papers of Lewis R. Gibbes, Professor of mathematics, astronomy, and physics at the College of Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, from 1838-1892. Papers include materials relating to Gibbes' studies in France, assorted obituaries, eulogies, and memorials, his published papers and newspaper articles (collected into several scrapbooks) on his scientific work and other topics, assorted Elliott Society of Natural History materials, astronomical charts and calculations, assorted cartes de visites, cabinet cards, and daguerreotype images of prominent scientific personages, including a daguerreotype of the Swiss-American biologist and geologist Louis Agassiz as well as a carte de visite of Confederate General Robert E. Lee, assorted prints collected by Gibbes, and correspondence including drafts of letters from Gibbes to C. S. Sargent at the Arnold Arboretum in Brookline, Massachusetts.

Collection Arrangement

Materials are described at the folder level.

Acquisitions Information

The volume Paris Illustrated was donated in 1941 by Sarah P. Gibbes and Anna Gibbes.

Related Material

Related materials in Special Collections include 8 microfilm reels of the Lewis R. Gibbes papers (Mss 17,327). Originals are held by the Library of Congress.

Separated Material

The pamphlet Constitution and By-Laws of the Elliott Society of Natural History of Charleston, S.C.: As Adopted by the Society in Convention, February, 1857, the Proceedings of the Elliott Society of Natural History of Charleston, South Carolina, volumes 1 and 2, and A Catalogue of the Phoenogamous Plants, of Columbia, S.C. and Its Vicintity have been removed and cataloged separately.

Processing Information

Originally processed by Special Collections Staff, date unknown. Edited and reprocessed for encoding by Joshua Minor, May 2016.

Creator

Source

Title
Inventory of the Lewis R. Gibbes Papers, 1800s-1893, 1937
Status
Completed
Author
Processed by: Special Collections Staff; machine-readable finding aid created by: Joshua Minor
Date
2016
Description rules
DACS
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Repository

Contact:
Special Collections
College of Charleston Libraries
66 George Street
Charleston South Carolina 29424
(843) 953-8016
(843) 953-6319 (Fax)