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Arthur Bridwell Papers

 Collection — Container: All
Identifier: SC-009

Scope and Contents

The collection provides a substantial amount of details regarding Bridwell's personal life, particularly his thoughts and activities from 1903 to 1944. This information is found in thirteen journals and in newspaper articles from local newspapers like the Baker Orange. Details about Bridwell's life before 1903 are scant, and Bridwell's later years are corroborated only through newspaper articles about him. Other important items in the collection include a scrapbook of photos taken by Bridwell and research notes.


  • Created: 1898-1981
  • Other: Majority of material found in 1903-1944

Biographical or Historical Information

Arthur Bridwell was born around 1874 in Indiana. As a child, he helped his father collect fossils, fostering an early interest in collecting natural and archaelogical artifacts.He graduated fom Baker in 1902, and continued graduate school until 1921, majoring in Biology. Several journals he maintained span from a period of four decades, from 1904 to 1944, and detail his work involving geology, biology, and archaeology, as well as his personal life, including his socialist activities. Much of his research was focused on studying the nature and primitive life of Eastern Kansas, and in 1939, his description of "The Brachipod Genus Enteletes" was published by the Kansas Academy of Science. He became a photographer and was considered an authority on the subject. He was briefly the curator of the Baker University Museum and served as a susbtitute instructor for several Baker professors. A collector of many unusual items, he donated his natural and archaeological collections to Baker and the University of Kansas. Bridwell died on December 30, 1966.

Note written by Kurt Schmeling


3.00 boxes

Language of Materials



Collection of Arthur Bridwell (about 1874-1966), photographer, biologist, archaeologist, socialist, and curator who resided in Baldwin, Kansas. The collection provides a wealth of information about Bridwell's personal life through his journals and correspondence and contains a significant amount of research notes. Also included are newspaper clippings from local newspapers about Bridwell's contributions to Baker University. A scrapbook containing photos taken by Bridwell not only demonstrate his skill as a photographer, but also gives a glimpse of early 20th century life in Baldwin, KS. Other items, such as letters collected by Baker's alumni office, provide more information about Bridwell's early life.

Arrangement Note

The collection is arranged in six series. The first series contains bound and stapled materials and is divided into five subseries: journals, notebooks, booklets, periodicals, and photo scrapbooks. The second series contains documents that relate to Bridwell as a researcher and is divided into four subseries: research notes, academic notes, essays, and collection lists. The third series contains correspondence and is divided into three subseries: memos, letters, and correspondence to Baker University’s Alumni Office. The fourth series contains newspaper articles and is divided into two subseries: print that was published up to 1966 and print that was published after 1966. The fifth series contains material pertaining to Bridwell’s personal life and is divided into: university material, alumni details, conversation notes, illustrations, poetry, and tangible items. The sixth series contains photography and is divided into two subseries: photos taken by Bridwell and photos of Bridwell.

Archon Finding Aid Title
Kurt Schmeling
Description rules
Other Unmapped
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Baker University and Kansas United Methodist Archives Repository

518 8th Street
PO Box 65
Baldwin City KS 66006 US