Archives Online at Indiana University

View options:

Search within this document:


Want to learn more?

  • Do you have a question about this collection?
  • Would you like to view the original items in this collection?
  • Are you seeking permission to publish or reproduce items in this collection?

Please contact the holding repository: University Archives, IU Bloomington


Bookmark and Share

Charles C. Deam papers, 1881-1983, bulk 1900-1953

A Guide to the Papers at the Indiana University Archives

Electronic finding aid encoded by Ryan K. Lee

Summary Information

Indiana University Office of University Archives and Records Management
1320 East Tenth Street
Herman B Wells Library E460
Bloomington, IN 47405-7000
Phone: 812-855-1127

Deam, Charles Clemon, 1865-1953.

Charles C. Deam papers, 1881-1983,  bulk 1900-1953

Collection no

5.2 cubic ft.

Materials are in English.

Indiana's first state forester; Deam was a taxonomic botanist known for his work on trees, plants, shrubs, and flowers of Indiana. Collection consists of diaries, correspondence, copies of published books, library records, financial records, notations on specimens, records of sale of Deam's library and herbarium to Indiana University, articles about him, information about his family, and a paper by Deam on the pharmacy business. Includes correspondence from Charles A. Weatherby, curator of Gray Herbarium at Harvard University.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions
This collection is open for research.

Advance notice is required.

Usage Restrictions
Copyright interests for this collection have not been transferred to the Trustees of Indiana University. For more information, contact the Indiana University Archivist.
Preferred Citation
[Item], Charles C. Deam papers, Collection C22, Office of University Archives and Records Management, Indiana University, Bloomington.
Processing Information
Processed by Kathryn Fuller; revised by Dina Kellams and Rebecca Smith

Completed in 2006.

Biographical Note
Charles C. Deam was a taxonomic botanist known for his work on plants, trees, flowers, and shrubs of Indiana. He was born on August 30, 1865 on a farm in Wells County, Indiana. He graduated from Bluffton High School in 1884, taught school for a year, and attended DePauw University between 1885 and 1887. Forced to drop out due to a lack of funds, Deam went on to work at odd jobs, including that of drug store apprentice. In 1891 he started a drug store business which he operated on his own until he sold a part interest to J. Spivey in 1910. At the time of his death in 1953, he still held a one third interest in the business.

Deam began collecting plants sometime in the 1890s when, as he frequently recounted, his doctor ordered long walks to counteract ill effects of his job. From then on he devoted most of his time to botanical interests. At first he considered the whole world his subject and made some trips to Central America at the turn of the century to collect plants there. Soon after, though, he decided to concentrate on Indiana and by the end of his career claimed that he had been in and collected plants from every township of the state. By the time he gave his herbarium to Indiana University it contained at least 63,000 specimens, some of which he was first to identify. Although he never earned a degree in botany, he did receive honorary degrees from Wabash College, DePauw University, and Indiana University.

Deam held government positions related to his interests: State Forester, 1909-1913; Acting State Forester, 1917-1918; State Forester, 1919 to 1928; and State Forestry Researcher, 1928-1940. In 1921, he wrote and pushed through House Bill 77 which protected woodlands and reduced the taxes on them.

Deam published many articles and four books, each in several editions: Trees of Indiana (1912); Shrubs of Indiana (1924); Grasses of Indiana (1929); and Flora of Indiana (1940).

In 1893, Deam married Stella Mullin (1870-1953). She taught school at that time and later became active in community and women's groups in Bluffton. They had two children: Robert Mullin Deam (1896-1898) and Roberta Deam Ortenburger (1900-1961).

For more information on Charles Deam, consult the following:
  • Kriebel, Robert. Plain Ol' Charlies Deam: Pioneer Hoosier Botanist. West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University Press, 1987.
  • Weatherwax, Paul. "Charles C. Deam: Hoosier Botanist." Indiana Magazine of History 67 (1971): 197-267.

Scope and Content Note

This collection contains material created and collected by Charles C. Deam, an Indiana taxonomic botantist, forestry official, and businessman. The Charles C. Deam Papers comprise 5.4 cubic feet and span the period from 1881 to 1983 with the bulk of the records created between 1900 and 1953. The collection is divided into five series: Personal information; Journals; Publications by Charles Deam; Correspondence; and Subject files. The Subject files series is divided into four sub-series: Administrative files; Botany and science; General files; and Unpublished works and notes.

The first series is Biographical information. It contains materials from the years 1884-1983. The series consists primarily of articles written about Deam and published in newspapers, magazines, and newsletters. Included in this series are one of his father's patents, a letter to Deam’s daughter, Roberta Deam Ortenburger, from Gene Stratton Porter, and information about his wife, Stella Mullin Deam. The series also includes a folder of speeches about Deam that were delivered by Harriet Winch.

Journals is the second series and spans the years 1900-1953. The series includes Deam's personal professional journals, dating from 1900 to 1953, with those written after October 1913 containing entries for almost every day. These journals read almost like diary entries and include personal as well as professional information. Some also include newspaper clippings taped to the pages.

The next series covers the years 1912-1953 and is entitled Publications by Charles Deam. This series contains copies of Deam's texts including Shrubs of Indiana , Trees of Indiana, Grasses of Indiana, and Flora of Indiana . The files include handwritten notes and corrections made by Deam. The series also includes a folder of newspaper articles written by Deam dating from 1914-1919.

The next series is Correspondence, 1896-1953, and includes letters Deam wrote and received as well as special bound collections of letters he received honoring him on special occasions. Especially noteworthy is correspondence from Charles A. Weatherby, curator of the Gray Herbarium at Harvard University, a good part of which includes notations and messages by Deam. There is also much correspondence between Deam and Harriet Winch, Paul Weatherwax, T.E. Shaw, and Ray Friesener. This series is arranged alphabetically by surname.

The last series is Subject files. This series is divided into four sub-series: Administration; Botany and science; General files; and Unpublished works and notes. The sub-series are arranged alphabetically as are the folders within them. The material in this series dates from 1881-1953.

The first sub-series is Administration. It spans the years 1881-1953. This sub-series contains financial records of both personal and professional nature. It also includes Deam’s labor record from 1909-1913 and lists of magazine subscriptions and library transactions, which Deam meticulously recorded in two bound volumes.

The second sub-series spans the years 1885-1952 and is entitled Botany and science. It includes brochures and information about botanical gardens that Deam had visited, a leaf specimen that he had collected, and an article written by Elmore Barce that caught Deam’s attention. It also contains the minutes of the Spenser Club, which are mostly written by Deam’s wife, Stella. The Spenser Club was a botany club run by Deam and his wife on the Indiana University campus.

General files is the third sub-series and contains materials from the years 1884-1953. Of particular interest is House Bill No. 77 which was proposed by Deam during his time as state forester. The awards file contains cards of recognition from Deam’s time as a primary school student as well as certificates of travel in South America from later times in his life. There is also a folder of articles written by Roland M. Harper. The folder also contains an article about Harper himself, but offers no explanation of how his articles found their way into this collection. The articles are of a mostly political character, and it is presumed that Deam was either interested in these topics or a friend of the author.

The last sub-series is Unpublished works and notes. The material in this sub-series spans 1883-1952. The bulk of the material is comprised of Deam’s notes on different plant specimens, some of which is found in spiral bound notebooks. The series also contains some of Deam’s high school assignments, such as the Latin exercise book and the school essays and drawings. The photo record is a list of photos taken by Deam on his expeditions.


Arranged in five series: Biographical information; Journals; Publications; Correspondence; and Subject files. The Subject files series is divided into four sub-series: Administration, Botany and science, General files and Unpublished works and notes.

Separated Material

  • Seed samples from box 6.
  • A collection of oversized certificates that is stored upstairs.
  • Series: Created by Deam, discarded 27 old textbooks and approximately 25 envelopes.
  • Series: About Deam, discarded duplicates of articles about Deam and magazines and newspapers from which articles about him had been cut.

  • Series: Biographical information, 1884-1983 

    Box 1 Teaching license, 1884

    Certificates from honorary societies, programs from events at which Deam was honored, etc.,  1905-1934

    Articles about Charles Deam,






    Information on the Deam Family, 1885-1954 

    Winch, Harriet: speeches re: Deam, 1936, 1979 

    Series: Journals, 1900-1953 

    Box 1 June 18-July 18, 1900 





    Nov. 1, 1913-Dec. 12, 1917 

    Dec. 12, 1917-Sept. 11, 1921 

    Sept. 21, 1921-May 19, 1925 

    May 20, 1925-June 5, 1925 

    June 6, 1929-Sept. 17, 1934 

    Sept. 18, 1934-June 25, 1939 

    June 26, 1939-Apr. 8, 1945 

    Apr. 10, 1945-Aug. 29, 1950 

    Aug. 30, 1950-March 29, 1953 

    Series: Publications, 1912-1953 

    Box 2 State Board of Forestry. Eleventh Annual Report, 1911 

    Contains Trees of Indiana, pp. 86-357, 1912

    Trees of Indiana,

    pp. 86-357 of State Board of Forestry Eleventh Annual Report bound with extra papers on which Deam has written notes, 1912 

    2d ed, 1919 

    1st rev. ed.,


    (includes handwritten corrections), 1921 

    2d rev. ed. (4th ed. bound with extra papers on which Deam has written notes), 1931 

    3d rev. ed. (5th ed.), 1953 

    Grasses of Indiana, 1929 

    Shrubs of Indiana,


    (bound with extra papers on which Deam has written notes), 1924 

    2d ed., 1932 

    Flora of Indiana,


    (bound with extra papers on which Deam has written notes), 1940 

    Newspaper articles by Deam, 1914-1919 

    Series: Correspondence, 1896-1983 

    Box 3 "A", 1913-1953 

    Abbe, Ernst C., 1951 

    Adair, E. Ross, 1952-1953 

    Aellen, Paul, 1932,   1946 

    Ammons, Nelle, 1951 

    Anderson, Edgar, 1929-1958 

    Andrew, Margaret, 1950 

    Andrews, Abe E., 1950 

    Andrews, F. M., 1929 

    Arnold Arboretum, Harvard University, 1921,   1951 

    Arthur, J. C., 1938 

    “B", 1935-1953 

    Bailey, L. H., 1949-1952 

    Bailey, William M., 1951 

    Baldwin, S. Glidden, 1950 

    Ball, Carleton R., 1921-1946 

    Banta, Edna, 1950 

    Barger, N. R., 1951 

    Barnes, William B., 1943-1951 

    Barnhart, John Hendley, 1932,   1938 

    Bartlett, H. H., 1924,   1950,   1953 

    Beadell, H. A., 1952-1953 

    Bechtel, A. R., 1936-1953 

    Becker, Elmer, 1950 

    Benson, Lyman, 1939-1941 

    Bidgood, Hallie, 1952 

    Billington, Cecil, 1950,   1952 

    Birthday Letters to Deam, 1945 

    (bound volume)

    Blatchley, W. S., 1896,   1938 

    Braun, E. Lucy, 1951 

    Brenckle, J. F., 1939,   1942 

    Brook, Parker & Co. Ltd., 1951 

    Brooks, Earl, 1951-1952 

    Buckmaster, Mrs. Sidney M., 1950 

    Butler, Amos W., 1929 

    "C", 1913-1953 

    Calvert, Mrs. Scott, 1952,   undated 

    Camp, Wendell H., 1944-1952 

    Chase, Agnes, 1940-1951 

    Clausen, Robert T., 1937,   1942 

    Cleland, Ralph E., 1939-1940 

    Coats, Nellie, 1952 

    Cook, James E., 1950,   1953 

    Cook, Melville T., 1952 

    Coopers, R. H., 1950 

    Coulter, Deam, 1917-1928 

    Craig, E. Lingle, 1951 

    Craven, Crin, 1949 

    Cummins, George B., 1930,   1952 

    "D", 1913-1983 

    Daily, William A., 1951 

    Davidson, J. F., 1950 

    Dayton, William A., 1942,   1949 

    Dinner Honoring Deam, 1938 

    (bound volume)

    Denuyl, Daniel, 1931-1954 

    Dietz, Harry F., 1950,   1953 

    Dobbs, Ray, 1950-1952 

    Duncan, Wilbur H., 1950 

    Ek, Charles M., 1934,   1950-1954 

    Enders, H. E., 1951 

    Essig, Sanford F., 1950,   undated 

    "F", 1910-1952 

    Fassett, Norman C., 1942,   1951-1953 

    Farwell, Oliver A., 1931,   1941 

    Fately, Nolan W., 1950-1951 

    Faught, Francis Ashley, 1927 

    Fix, William L., 1951-1952 

    Flora of Indiana: Reviews and Letters, 1940-1941 

    (bound volume)

    Fort, Russell, 1950-1951 

    Fox, William B., 1950-1951 

    Friesner, Ray C.,





    Fuller, Albert M., 1944,   1953 

    "G", 1921-1952 

    re: Deam’s collection of Galls, 1917 

    Gates, F. C., 1952-1953 

    Goodwin, Maurice C., 1951 

    Goodwin, Mrs. M. C., 1951 

    Gray Herbarium, 1925,   1950-1951 

    Greene, Richard A., 1951 

    Grepke, Eva, 1952 

    Guthrie, W. A., 1913,   1917 

    "H", 1909-1952 

    Hamlet, Mr. & Mrs. Jack, 1951,   1953 

    Hansen, Robert J., 1950 

    Harper, Roland M., 1950-1953 

    Hatt, Robert T., 1947-1952 

    Hayes, Stanley W., 1942-1944,   1951 

    Hebert, P. E., 1952 

    Heiser, Charles B., 1944-1952 

    Hedden, L. H., 1950 

    Hermann, Fred, 1940-1952 

    Hessler, Robert, 1914 

    Hitchcock, A. S., 1920,   1925-1926 

    Hobbs, C. M., 1913 

    Hooten, Elliott R., 1912 

    Howe, Thomas D., 1953 

    Howell, A. V., 1951 

    Huffman, Sue, 1951 

    Hulten, Eric, 1952 

    Hussey, Paul, 1938,   1940 

    (re: John Hussey)

    "I", 1926-1952 

    International Friendship Gardens, 1951 

    "J", 1933-1945 

    Jackson, H. S., 1919-1920 

    Jackson, Lida and Ed, 1913,   1950 

    Jones, G. Neville, 1942,   1952 

    Jotter, E. V., 1948-1953 

    "K", 1950-1952 

    Keefe, Anselm M., 1951 

    Kinkead, Ludie J., 1945 

    Kinsey, Alfred C., 1950 

    Kriebel, Ralph M.,



    Kunkel, Kenneth M., 1913,   1950-1952 

    Box 4 "L", 1926,   1950-1953 

    Leatherman, Anna D., 1952 

    Ledin, R. Bruce, 1952 

    Liming, A. N., 1951 

    Lion’s Club, 1952 

    Logue, Everett G., 1948-1953 

    “Mac-Mc”, 1913-1951 

    McAbee, Margaret, 1952-1953 

    McAtee, Waldo L., 1952 

    McCoy, William A., 1950 

    McFarland, Frank T., 1950-1953 

    "M", 1929-1952 

    Markle, Millard S., 1950 

    Marshall, Thomas R., 14 Jul 1913 

    (United States Vice President)

    Men’s Garden Club (Fort Wayne), 1951 

    Miller, Helen, 1952 

    Moldenke, Harold N., 1942,   1952-1953 

    Mottier, David M., 1913-1933 

    Munz, Philip A., 1936,   1945 

    "N", 1951,   1953 

    Neff, Ivy J., 1950-1953 

    Nelson, James E., 1918 

    Nielsen, P. Chr., 1950 

    Nordine, Roy, 1951 

    "O", 1926-1951 

    Ortenburger, Robert, 1950-1951 


    Ortenburger, Roberta D., 1951,   1953 


    Ownbey, Gerald B., 1950 

    "P", 1941-1952 

    Palmer, Ernest J., 1938-1953 

    Palmer, T. S., 1951 

    Patton, Will A., 1950 

    Pauley, Scott S., 1951-1952 

    Phinney, A. J., 1931-1932,   1938 

    Pleiss, Griffin A., 1945 

    Potzger, John E., 1946-1953 

    "R", 1909-1952 

    Rickett, H. W., 1934,   1948 

    Rinear, Ralph W., 1950 

    Rollins, Reed C., 1952 

    Rosendahl, C. O., 1949-1951 

    "S", 1933-1953 

    Sark, Elmer J., 1950-1951 

    Sauers, Charles G., 1951,   1953 

    Saufley, William E., 1951 

    Science Press Printing Company, 1939 

    Segal, Simon, 1951 

    Seybert, John E., 1950-1952 

    Shaw, Thomas E.,



    Shinners, Lloyd H., 1942,   1945 

    Steele, Edward S., 1916-1917 

    Steyermark, J. A., 1950-1951 

    Storrs & Bement Company, 1952 

    Swallen, Jason R., 1943,   1949 

    Swink, Floyd A., 1950-1951 

    Svenson, Henry K., 1932-1951 

    "T", 1913-1952 

    Tehon, Louis O., 1951-1953 

    Totten, H. R., 1951-1952 

    Troop, J., 1928 

    Tucker, Mack, 1953 

    "U", 1945,   1950 

    Utter, L. Gordon, 1932 

    VanCamp, J.L., 1949-1952 

    Visher, S. S., 1945 

    "W", 1913-1953 

    Wadmond, Samuel C., 1950-1952 

    Weatherby, Charles A., 1930-1952 

    Weatherwax, Paul,




    Welch, Winona H., 1939,   1950-1953 

    Wells, B. W., 1918-1952 

    Wells, Herman B, 1939 

    Wheeler, Lawrence, 1951 

    Wilcox, Ralph, 1949-1953 

    Winch, Harriet,








    Box 5 1951-1953 

    Winchell, John H., 1950 

    Witmer, S. W., 1951-1952 

    Wood, Elmo S., 1952 

    Woolen, William Watson, 1913,   1916 

    Young, Catherine M. E., 1942 

    Yuncker, Truman G., 1951,   1953 

    Zyon, Rolla, 1953 

    Fragments & Unknown, 1934,   1947,   undated 

    Series: Subject files, 1881-1953 

    Subseries: Administration, 1881-1953 

    Financial records,

    Box 5 Expense book, 1881-1882 

    Household furniture, 1893 

    Cost of residence, 1902-1907 

    Specimen purchases, 1912-1950 

    Labor Record: Total hours worked, 1909-1913 

    Library record,

    Books loaned, 1903-1951 

    Catalogue of books, 1893-1953 

    Magazine subscriptions and dues to organizations, 1926-1950 


    Subseries: Botany and science, 1885-1952 

    Box 5 Barce, Elmore- Article, 1930 

    Brookville Society Natural History bulletin, 1885-1886 

    Changes in nomenclature since Gray, 1935 

    Leaf Specimens- Deam Oak (outside Bluffton, Indiana), undated 

    “A Letter Mostly About Oaks and Plums”, 1952 

    Missouri Botanical Garden, 1914 

    Spenser club minutes, 1902-1907 

    Wells County Atlas, 1938 

    Subseries: General files, 1884-1953 

    Box 5 Address book, 1912-1952 

    Autograph book, 1884-1891 

    Awards, certificates, resolutions, 1887-1952 

    Classified owners list- Indiana counties, 1933 

    Guestbook: Deam’s arboretum,

    1925-1941,   1947 


    Harper, R.: Articles sent to Deam, 1939-1953 

    House Bill no.77- Authored by Deam, 1921 

    Information on other botanists, 1920’s-30’s,   undated 

    Indiana counties information, undated 

    Letters of recommendation re: Deam, 1885-1946 

    Subseries: Unpublished works and notes, 1983-1952 

    Box 5 Bolle: Geum notes, undated 

    Botany workbook, 1884-1896 

    Early botanical collections, undated 

    Exercise book: Latin translations, 1883-1886 

    Hibiscus Palusris Linn notes, undated 

    Flora notes,

    Florida, 1938-1949 

    Indiana, 1941-1952 

    Kentucky, 1940 

    Box 6 List of plants in cultivation, undated 

    List of Indiana Collectors, 1936,   undated 


    Miscellaneous Information, 1910-1922 

    Pharmaceuticals and Household products, 1910 

    Notes, Misc., undated 

    Photo record, 1913-1938 

    School essay speech and drawing, 1880’s 

    Specimens loaned, 1937-1950 

    Willows of Indiana notes, 1919 

    Accessibility Help