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A total of 33,726 mounted flower specimens from all over the world were added to the Gray Herbarium last year, bringing the university's great study collection of flowering plants and ferns to a total of 1,067,576 sheets of specimens, it was announced last week in the annual report of Merritt L. Fernald, Fisher Professor of Natural History and director of the institution.
The Herbarium, organized more than a century ago by Asa Gray, pioneer American botanist, is the greatest in America and the finest in the world in North and South American flora.
An important service of the Herbarium specialists has been in the identification of thousands of "puzzling or difficult plants" sent in by institutions, collectors, or amateurs, Professor Fernald reported.
Gift and exchange collections were received of plants from Newfoundland, Palestine, Brazil, Ontario and Quebee, Mexico, Indo-China, and many of the United States.
During the year 26,000 duplicate specimens were sent out in exchange to 50. institutions and individuals in the United States, and 13 foreign institutions.
War Cuts Activities
Foreign wars have cut down the loan activities of the Herbarium, Professor Fernald reported. The Harvard specialists borrowed some 6,189 specimens for study, and loaned out 6,757 for study elsewhere. These figures are down considerably from last year.
In the Herbarium's field work, Professor Fernald assembled 7,282 sheets of critically important specimens in southeastern Virginia, a historic region of American botanical study. This exploration yielded more than 100 specimens never before known in the region, and 20 new to science.
Other staff collections were made on the Island of Dominica, and in South Carolina
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