|University of California, Berkeley|
|University Herbarium||Jepson Herbarium|
|W.A. Setchell & H.D. Johnstone, San Pedro, California, late 1800s with Pelagophycus porra||
Paul Claude Silva (1922 - 2014)
Full list of Paul Silva's publications
|Pelagophycus porra, in situ, Point Loma, California|
W.A. Setchell, G.F. Papenfuss and P.C. Silva used their unparalleled understanding of the phycological literature to build the collection that comprises rare editions by the most important authors of their eras as well as lesser, but significant lights. Some of the classic authors of the 18th and 19th centuries - Esper, Turner, Stackhouse, Grunow, Bory, Harvey, Kützing, DeToni and the Agardhs - are represented here, in addition to a comprehensive collection of 20th century literature. Rare expedition fascicles (such as the Voyage of La Coquille) are here and hard to find elsewhere. The 300 linear feet of books are arranged in alphabet order by author and are catalogued in a card file, as are reprints.
The reprint collection (150 linear feet) resulted, in part, from the founding of the International Phycological Society by P.C. Silva. This resulted in connections with colleagues and booksellers all over the world, who shared their research via reprint exchange. The library has also been given reprint collections from other herbaria. International phycological journals (80 linear feet) have, for the most part, been bound.
In 2011, the University Herbarium was awarded a major grant from the National Science Foundation to image and database marine macroalgae (seaweeds) that are known to grow in California, Oregon, or Washington, wherever in the world they occur. These collections are available for viewing at: https://ucjeps.cspace.berkeley.edu/ucjeps_project/public/publicsearch/
In 2014, a collaborative NSF grant (The Macroalgal Herbarium Consortium: Accessing 150 Years of Specimen Data to Understand Changes in the Marine/Aquatic Environment) initiated the imaging and databasing of seaweed collections in herbaria throughout the United States. UC digitized collections from Humboldt State University and Stanford's Hopkins Marine Station, and is currently working on completing the imaging and databasing of its worldwide seaweed collections. To see the results of this ongoing project as they accumulate, see: http://macroalgae.org/portal/index.php
An eFlora project on California Seaweeds has been funded by a grant from the Packard Foundation. This online flora will update Abbott & Hollenberg's Marine Algae of California (1976) and provide a portal for students, ecologists, managers, and the public who wish to learn more about our 750 seaweed species.
The Silva Center is a lasting tribute to the legacy of Paul C. Silva.
UC has emphasized marine algae from its inception, primarily due to the interests of its founder, W.A. Setchell, who specialized in several groups of seaweeds and in marine biogeography. As a result of Setchell's efforts and those of his successors, G.F. Papenfuss and P.C. Silva, UC's seaweed collection is exemplary. Over the years, it has developed an emphasis on Pacific Coast algae, beginning with Setchell's unrealized goal of producing a seaweed flora of the Pacific Coast.
When Setchell arrived in 1895, he inherited a small collection of seaweeds collected by Marshall Avery Howe from Monterey Bay. Setchell collected extensively with the help of amateurs and the collections grew in size and geographic scope. Setchell procured a large number of type specimens and established contacts worldwide. His students, including Nathaniel Lyon Gardner, became well known phycologists. One of Setchell's earliest accomplishments was the Phycotheca Boreali-Americana, the Algae of North America. This 46 volume set of exsiccatae, including many type specimens, was distributed in 80 sets to major institutions and represents one of the most important historical collections in North America (http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/ina/pba/pba_main.html).
George F. Papenfuss succeeded Setchell as Curator of Algae and brought with him extensive collections from South Africa and Hawaii. He added collections from east Africa resulting from an expedition funded by the National Science Foundation in the 1960's. Papenfuss supervised 14 dissertations on the morphology and taxonomy of marine algae, maintaining UC's eminence in phycology. Paul C. Silva came to Berkeley in 1948 as a graduate student and returned as Curator of Algae in 1960. He collected extensively on the Pacific coast of North America.
UC has ~180,000 seaweed specimens with ~50,000 from California. The collections represent voucher material for regionally and internationally important studies and include approximately 2000 type specimens. With the recent addition of 40,000 specimens from the Los Angeles County Museum (including those formerly housed at the Allan Hancock Foundation) plus many gifts from orphaned collections, our holdings of California seaweeds are extraordinary.
© 2015 Regents of the University of California
University of California, Berkeley
University and Jepson Herbaria
1001 Valley Life Sciences Building #2465
Berkeley, CA 94720-2465