Keep The Herbarium At The University of Iowa! sign now

The University of Iowa plans to close its historic Herbarium. We, the undersigned wish to make a public record of our conviction that the University of Iowa Herbarium should remain at the University of Iowa.

Established by 1869, the Herbarium was the first in the state; its early development was nurtured by such luminaries as Thomas Huston Macbride and Bohumil Shimek; and in 1886, it was utilized for the first University of Iowa graduate degree. Today, the Herbarium continues to be a focal point for biological and environmental studies. There are over 250,000 specimens, including the only major collections of bryophytes and plant fossils in Iowa. The heart of the collection is the nearly 75,000 Iowa specimens that make it a regionally significant resource. The Herbarium is actively accessed by faculty, students, staff, government agencies, and the public. Over the last ten years, more than 10 native species never before recorded from Iowa have been discovered by people using the Herbarium; more than 100 publications/reports/creative works and 30 theses have been based on the Herbarium; and class use has averaged more than 300 students in 10-12 classes per year. Additionally, the Herbarium has an active outreach program that includes presentations to conservation groups, schools and colleges, and the Herbarium web site averages more than 4,000 accesses monthly. For additional information, see http://atmos.cgrer.uiowa.edu/herbarium.

We respectfully call on the University of Iowa Administration to:

Recognize that the Herbarium is an integral part of this universitys irreplaceable cultural and natural history legacy, and that it continues to be a focal point for biological and environmental studies in eastern Iowa.

Place a moratorium on transfer of the Herbarium to Iowa State University until there can be an accurate and fair assessment of the Herbariums contributions to research, teaching and service.

Consider the offer from the University of Iowa Center for Global and Regional Environmental Research to provide an administrative home for the Herbarium and salary for an assistant curator.

Work with the Friends of the University of Iowa Herbarium to identify a permanent location for the Herbarium at the University of Iowa.

Enable the Friends of the University of Iowa Herbarium to work, in a timely manner, with the University of Iowa Foundation to raise additional funds over and above the approximately $250,000 that already has been pledged.

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Troy KingBy:
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The University of Iowa Administration

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