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Thomas Morley papers

Identifier: ua1223

Scope and Content

The collection contains class materials, correspondence, reprinted articles and publications and research materials. The bulk of the collection is made up of data collected about various plant species, many of which are located in Minnesota, and class materials about botany and Minnesota flora. Also, there are materials related to Morley’s work for the Minnesota Chapter of the Nature Conservancy.


  • 1897-2001


Use of Materials

Items in this collection do not circulate and may be used in-house only.


Researchers may quote from the collection under the fair use provision of the copyright law (Title 17, U.S. Code). Requests to publish should be arranged with the University of Minnesota Archives.

Biographical Note

Thomas Morley was born on October 26, 1917. (1) He earned his B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley in 1940, 1941, and 1949, respectively. Following his graduation in 1949, he became an instructor at the University of Minnesota, where he taught classes in the Department of Botany (now the Department of Plant Biology). (2) He became an assistant professor in 1952, an associate professor in 1958, and a full professor in 1962. (1) Also in 1962, he began working as the curator of the Herbarium, for a year. During his time as a professor, Morley performed extensive research on the flora of Minnesota, which allowed him to write many seminal plant guides for the state. He retired as a professor emeritus in 1987. (1)

Outside of academics, Morley was a charter member of the Minnesota Chapter of the Nature Conservancy. (1) During his time with the chapter, he dedicated his time to the conservation of rare and native plants, while also advocating against the spread of invasive species. He was also a member of the Minnesota Native Plant Society, the American Society of Plant Taxonomy, the Botanical Society of America, and the International Society of Plant Taxonomy. Thomas Morley passed away February 2, 2002. (1)


(1) Biographical File, Morley, Thomas, Information files collection, University Archives
(2) History of the Conservatory, College of Biological Sciences


18.75 Cubic Feet (15 record boxes)

Language of Materials



Collection contains the papers of Thomas Morley, professor emeritus of botany at the University of Minnesota, and expert on Minnesota flora. These papers include class materials, correspondence, newspaper and reprint articles, and research data about various plant species.


The collection is arranged in the following series:

  • Series 1: Professional Material, 1897-2001
    • Subseries 1.1: Advisor Material, 1950-2000
    • Subseries 1.2: Correspondence, 1951-2001
    • Subseries 1.3: Course Material, 1925-1999
    • Subseries 1.4: Departmental Material, 1932-2001
    • Subseries 1.5: Organizations and Association Material, 1951-1986
    • Subseries 1.6: Project and Program Material, 1940-1989
    • Subseries 1.7: Publications, 1897-1993
  • Series 2: References and Research Material
  • Series 3: Reprint Publications and Newspaper Clippings, 1915-2001
  • Series 4: Photographs and Negatives, 1908, 1974-1982

Source of acquisition

Material was acquired through a transfer from the Biological Science Building with the help of George Weiblen on Sept. 30, 2014.

Processing Information

Processing completed with funds from the State of Minnesota from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund through the Minnesota Historical Society (2021-2022).

Thomas Morley Papers
Susan Hoffman; Adriana Esparza; Katelyn Morken
November 2014; August 2021
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Revision Statements

  • August-September 2021: Contents list added, notes updated

Collecting Area Details

Contact The University Archives Collecting Area