Welcome to the Morris Arboretum Archives

About The Archives

Scope: The Morris Arboretum Archives contains papers, books, ledgers, diaries, historic maps, lantern slides, photos, negatives and artifacts of the gardens called Compton prior to the transfer to the University of Pennsylvania in 1932. Journals were kept by the head gardener, estate staff and consultants hired to explore the feasibility of a school for gardeners.

After 1932, when the gardens became known as the Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania, many transfer documents were collected, such as architectural blueprints, landscape drawings by area firms, and negatives and photographs by the botanists and visitors at the gardens. Numerous papers about that period: the family, the plants, and the garden features are also in the collection.

Primary Audience: The Archives serves the Arboretum education, development, horticulture, and marketing staff, and is also open to qualified researchers by appointment. It is staffed by an archivist and a team of dedicated volunteers.

Digital Archives are available at morrisarboretum.pastperfect-online.com. Historic photos, film negatives, glass negatives, film slides, lantern slides, and steroscopes from the garden and more were shared on the web on a PastPerfect server in 2009. The first effort was rolled out to share historic images with staff, volunteers and members. An Archives link was added to the Arboretum website in 2012.

Hours are by appointment. To arrange a visit, please email leslm@upenn.edu.

Reproduction costs: Contact us with intent and audience.

Copyright: We follow the Creative Commons copyright guidelines, which allows copying for personal use. Commercial use requires permission of the Arboretum Archivist and legal department.

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To arrange a visit, or to inquire about volunteering, please email leslm@upenn.edu.