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National Museum of Natural History Libraries Entomology and Invertebrate Zoology Libraries

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The Entomology and Invertebrate Zoology Libraries, which are part of the Smithsonian Institution Libraries, Natural History Library, provide information support services to the Entomology and Invertebrate sections of the Department of Zoology at the National Museum of Natural History, 10th and Constitution Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20560 . In addition to serving museum staff, they also provide information assistance to a wide array of individuals including pre-doctoral students, post-doctoral fellows, visiting scientists, interns and the general public.

The libraries' collections emphasize systematics, taxonomy, morphology, zoogeography, ecology, evolution, biodiversity and comparative anatomy as related to invertebrates. The collections date from the mid- nineteenth century and emphasize new world fauna.

Entomology Library

History

The Entomology collection, established in 1881, supports the taxonomic interests of both the Smithsonian Department of Entomology, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (Systematic Entomology Laboratory), and the Department of Defense (Walter Reed Biosystematics Unit) entomologists who are stationed at the Smithsonian. As the Smithsonian received large quantities of insect specimens from government-sponsored expeditions, it divided these among collaborators for study and arrangement. SIL has received gifts and bequests from both agencies. With in-depth resources in systematic and taxonomic entomology, The Entomology collection stresses orders of Hempitera, Lepidoptera, Coleoptera, Hymenoptera, and Diptera within Insecta.

Location The Entomology Library is located in the National Museum of Natural History on the fifth floor, east wing, in room E532.

Hours and location

Entomology Collections

The 23,000 volume collection is weighted in the areas of taxonomy and anatomy of insects and related arthropods, especially arachnids, diptera, hymenoptera, coleoptera, lepidoptera, hemiptera, trichoptera and odonata.

Entomology Library Serials Holdings

Collection Arrangement
Monographs and serials are shelved by call number in separate sections of the library. There are additional sections for reference materials, folios, atlases, U.S. Department of Agriculture publications and bound reprints. The USDA materials and reprints are shelved in main entry order (usually author, or if no author, by title).

Invertebrate Zoology Library

History

The library collections of the Department of Invertebrate Zoology have had a flexible existence coinciding with the many reorganizations of the Department which they serve. Their origin dates from 1881 when they were housed as separate collections in the Smithsonian's National Museum. The present-day Department of Invertebrate Zoology was originally established as the Department of Marine Invertebrates during the general reorganization of the U.S. National Museum in 1880. Except for mollusks and insects, all marine and aquatic invertebrates were included under its care and study.
In 1897 when the U.S. National Museum was again reorganized, Marine Invertebrates became a division within the Department of Biology. In 1914 the Division of Marine Invertebrates merged with the Division of Mollusks to form a more comprehensive Division of Marine Invertebrates. A few years later, at different times, the echinoderm and molluscan specimen collections were removed from the Division to form the Divisions of Echinoderms and Mollusks. In 1947, with another reorganization, the Division of Marine Invertebrates was placed under the newly created Department of Zoology which later, in 1964, became three departments: Vertebrate Zoology, Entomology, and Invertebrate Zoology.
The division of Marine Invertebrates remained in the Department of Invertebrate Zoology until the Division was abolished in 1965 to become three new divisions: Crustacea, Echinoderms and Worms. These three in addition to the Mollusk Division formed the existing Department of Invertebrate Zoology.
Throughout these reorganizations of the Division of Marine Invertebrates, the library collections remained as a unified entity of the Division, as far as we can ascertain. With the newly created Divisions of Crustacea, Echinoderms and Worms, the corresponding books from the Division of Marine Invertebrates Library were separated out and newly formed collections developed into the Crustecea, Echinoderms, Worms and Copepods collections. The addition of the lower invertebrates and the mollusks library collections to this roster comprise our complete set of invertebrate zoology libraries. (Because the Mollusks library is of such substance and import to the SIL, it is treated separately below.)
The personal libraries of two eminent carcinologists led to the establishment of two special collections in the Division of Crustacea: "The Mary J. Rathbun Memorial Library of Crustacean Literature" and the "C.B. Wilson Copepod Library" both primarily reprint collections. Also, the Frank Smith library of (largely) earthworm literature was maintained as a separate entity for some time, but it has since been integrated into the Worms Library. SIL does not have responsibility for either of these reprint collections.

Location
The Invertebrate Zoology Library is located in the National Museum of Natural History on the second floor, west wing, in room W333.

Hours and location

Invertebrate Zoology Collection

Collection Description
The 5000 volume collection consists of publications in general invertebrate zoology, invertebrate paleobiology, coelenterates, echinoderms, sponges, worms and tunicates.

Invertebrate Zoology Libraries Serials Holdings

Collection Arrangement
Monographs and serials are shelved by call number in separate sections of the library. There are additional sections for reference materials, folios and gazetteers. Reprints are located in the back of the library and are maintained by the Invertebrate Zoology staff.

Mollusk Library and William Healey Dall Library

History

The Division of Mollusks under the Department of Invertebrate Zoology got under way with the acquisition of large quantities of shells from exploring expeditions. Little interest in researching the specimens existed until the publishing of a report on the Mollusca collected on the U.S. Exploring Expedition (Wilkes, 1838-42). William Healey Dall, one of America's foremost malacologists, came to the Smithsonian under Baird's influence in 1865, continuing under the employ of the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey and later the Geological Survey. Dall contributed to the sectional library over 7,500 books of his own, many of them rare and finely illustrated volumes. The gift vollumes deal with voyages and travels as well as mollusks. In 1990, a rare book collection was created from both the holdings extracted from a gift collection donated by Stillman S. Berry and the holdings from the general Mollusks collection, many of which came from William H. Dall's collection.

Location
The Mollusk Library is located in the National Museum of Natural History on the third floor, west wing, in room W333.

Hours and location

Mollusk Collection

Collection Description
The 7000 volume collection covers bivalvia, gastropoda and cephalopoda. There is an extensive fossil section in addition to materials relating to living mollusks.

Collection Arrangement
Monographs and serials are shelved by call number in separate sections of the library. There are additional sections for reference materials, folios and atlases. There is also a separate reprint section maintained by the Invertebrate Zoology staff.

Crustacea Library

Location
The Mary J. Rathbun Memorial Library of Crustacean Literature is located in the Museum Support Center Library in Suitland Maryland

Collection Description
The 2100 volume collection covers shrimps, lobsters, crabs and ostracods.

Hours and location

Copepods Library

The Charles Branch Wilson Copepods Library is located in the National Museum of Natural History on the first floor, west wing, in room W105.

Collection Description
The 80 volume collection specializes in one type of crustacean, the copepod. It consists mostly of reprints with a small number of monographs and serials.

Collection Arrangement
Monographs and serials are interfiled in main entry order (usually author, or if no author, by title) along with the reprints which are maintained by the Invertebrate Zoology staff. There is a separate folio section.

Hours and location

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