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Assistant Professor, Reference Librarian/ Bibliographer, Iowa State University Library, Ames, Iowa 50011. Phone 515-294-3642


During the nine years I have been a Librarian at Iowa State University, I have assisted many faculty and students to find locations and pictures of agricultural, scientific, and technological artifacts. Teaching and research in Iowa's schools, libraries, and museums increasingly require pectoral examination of old implements or instruments, and the physical descriptions of artifacts often serve as educational examples of primary research evidence.

Great numbers of Iowans nostalgically remember what old artifacts look like, how they were used, and where some of them are currently located. But memories will not last forever! No directory of inventoried artifacts exists in Iowa, and literature searches reveal no records of this subject that could be made available to the public.

I have been granted a six-month Faculty Improvement Leave starting in September 1977, in order to produce an annotated and illustrated index to the agricultural, scientific, and technological artifacts located in Iowa. The purpose of this project is to collect into one permanent record the descriptions and photographic identification of the artifacts (used or made in Iowa between 1830-1940) still extant among Iowa's libraries, museums, and private collections. Data processing by PL/1 computer language will provide the fastest and most consistent form of presentation.

This compilation is the first of its kind to receive regional or national interest, and the annotated, pictorial guide will offer permanent, visable proof of artifacts of Iowa's agricultural, scientific and technological heritage.

I would like to photograph and record those data about artifacts (made or used in Iowa between 1830-1940) which may be located in your collection. My primary interest will center around agricultural artifacts, but I will attempt to inventory all those that are classified as scientific and technological.

If you would kindly fill out and return the enclosed questionnaire, I will later make an appointment to visit you-if your collection has artifacts which are appropriate for me to photograph and record. After the computer listing has been made, I can send you a free copy of your collection's record, which you could use for insurance purposes, inventory registration, or personal-property tax claims.

Your willingness to accommodate my interest in gathering information about your artifacts is greatly appreciated. Should you know of additional collections of these kinds of artifacts which exist in or near your town or city, please let me know the owners' names and addresses on the accompanying Preliminary Information Sheet.