Document Type

General Interest Article


In tracing the beginnings of the Iowa Academy of Science, Jacob Swisher acknowledged in 1930 that the meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Dubuque in 1872 probably had much to do with the formation of the first Iowa Academy in 1875. The Dubuque meeting was the first meeting of the AAAS west of the Mississippi River, and it was at that meeting that many of the charter members of the first Academy began to develop a closer association with one another. An excursion across Iowa following the AAAS meeting touched various points of scientific interest and led to a better understanding of the materials of Iowa available for scientific study. The group of about 40 included several state geologists, botanists, and others interested in natural history; the excursion was probably a significant event in the early development of scientific research in the state. A number of Iowans joined the AAAS at the Dubuque meeting in 1872, including C. E. Bessey, of Ames, Asa Horr and T. M. Irish of Dubuque, J. C. Arthur of Charles City, and W. C. Preston of Iowa City. Samuel Calvin and Thomas H. Macbride also attended the meeting. Most of these men were involved in the formation of the first Iowa Academy of Science three years later.

Publication Date

March 1975

Journal Title

Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science




1 pt. 1

First Page


Last Page



©1975 Iowa Academy of Science, Inc.



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