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Arthur W. Bower papers



Scope and Contents

Biographical Note

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

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Arthur W. Bower papers, 1861-1881

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Collection Overview

Title: Arthur W. Bower papers, 1861-1881Add to your cart.

Primary Creator: Bower, Arthur W. (1846-1915)

Extent: 0.5 Linear Feet

Arrangement: The correspondence and diaries are arranged chronologically.

Date Acquired: 08/01/1965

Collection processed by: Bonnie Koopman


The collection consists of correspondence from Bower to his family, Bower’s personal diaries, and two rice paper booklets of woodblock prints.

Scope and Contents of the Materials

The Bower papers (MC 10) consist of correspondence from Bower to his family, Bower’s personal diaries, and two rice paper booklets of woodblock prints. Within Bower's correspondence, there are two final letters written from his sheep ranch in Montana and reflect life in the late 19th century.

The diaries included within the collection depict the daily activities of a Dutchess County Farm, and of student life at RPI.  The final diary covers the periods in which Bower was a teacher at RPI.  Bower’s astute observations and thoughtful comments on national as well as local events make this collection a valuable tool for researchers.

Biographical Note

Arthur Wellington Bower was born September 25, 1846 in Pleasant Valley, New York, Dutchess County, near Poughkeepsie; the eldest of eight children.  The Bower family ran a successful farm. Bower attended local schools and taught before entering RPI in the fall of 1867.  Bower graduated in 1871 with a degre in Civil Engineering, and was an instructor in mathematics and mechanics in the Institute from 1871-1874. In 1874 he was appointed assistant professor of mathematics and instructor in mechanics. In 1875 he was appointed assistant professor of physics and in 1878, professor of physics. He held this position until 1880.

Throughout Bower's years as a student at the Institute, and even after Bower moved to Troy, he returned home each summer and vacation to work on the farm.  Bower married Martha W. Foggin of New York City in 1878.  In 1880 after a period of ill health, he and his wife moved to Montana to join his brothers on a sheep ranch.  Later on he and his wife returned east to Mount Vernon, New York where he lived until his death in 1915.  He left no children.

Administrative Information

Repository: Institute Archives and Special Collections

Related Materials: See Faculty/Alum file on Arthur Wellington Bower for an article written about Bower by Samuel Reznick for New York History, 1971.

Preferred Citation: Arthur W. Bower papers MC 10. Institute Archives and Special Collections, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY.

Processing Information: Collection was reboxed and re-organized to reflect chronological order.

Box and Folder Listing

Browse by Box:

[Box 1],
[Box 2],

Box 1Add to your cart.
Folder 1: Diary, 1861 February 16- April 27Add to your cart.
Folder 2: Diary, No. 1, 1865 March-JuneAdd to your cart.
Folder 3: Diary, No. 2, 1865 June-AugustAdd to your cart.
Folder 4: Diary, No. 3, 1865 August-OctoberAdd to your cart.
Folder 5: Diary, No. 4, 1865 October 15-September 10Add to your cart.
Folder 6: Diary, No. 5, 1865 Decemnber-1866 FebruaryAdd to your cart.
Folder 7: Daily Journal, 1866 January 1-December 31Add to your cart.
Folder 8: Diary, 1867 June1-September 8Add to your cart.
Folder 9: Diary, 1867 January 1-May 29Add to your cart.
Folder 10: Diary, 1867 September 9-1868 April 11Add to your cart.
Item 1: Diary, 1869 July 1-1870 Septemeber 15Add to your cart.
Item 2: Diary, 1868 April 12-June 30Add to your cart.
Box 2Add to your cart.
Item 1: Diary, 1871 July 1-1872 September 8Add to your cart.
Folder 1: Family Correspondence, 1870-1871Add to your cart.
Folder 2: Written account of Geological Tour, undatedAdd to your cart.
Folder 3: Booklets of woodblock prints, 1867 November 8Add to your cart.

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