Knapp, Seaman Asahel, Papers, 1856-1931 and undated

Permanent URI for this collection

Creator: Knapp, Seaman Asahel

Collection #: S.549.1 #

Language: English

Biographical Sketch

Seaman Knapp was born December 16, 1833, in Essex County, New York, and attended Poultney Academy and Union College, from which he graduated in 1856. He taught at Fort Edward Institute and later founded the Ripley Female College in Poultney, Vermont (1863). In 1866, he moved to Iowa to farm. In 1879, Knapp was appointed Professor of Practical and Experimental Agriculture at Iowa State Agriculture College and held that post until 18885, when he moved to Louisiana. There he became active in rice farming and served as the first president of the Rice Growers' Association. In 1897, he began working for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, taking charge of the demonstration farms in the South, and was active in the formation of the Agriculture Extension Service. Knapp married Maria Hotchkiss in 18856, and they had three sons and two daughters. One son, Bradford Knapp, served as president of Texas Technological College from 1932 to 1938. Seaman Knapp died on April 1, 1911.

The Handbook of Texas has published a more in-depth online biography of Seaman A. Knapp at

Scope and Contents

The collection includes correspondence, financial and legal materials, charts, maps and graphs, printed material, news clippings, literary productions and scrapbooks pertaining to Seaman A. Knapp. It bulks (1892-1912) with correspondence, including letters from William Howard Taft and Booker T. Washington, as well as printed material and literary productions concerning early 20th century agriculture. 21 prints and 6 negatives were transferred to photographs.


Open for Research

Related Material

Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library

Bradford Knapp Papers, 1891-1940 and undated

Preferred Citation

Seaman Asahel Knapp Papers, 1856-1931 and undated, Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library, Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas

Accession Information

Gifts, 1970

Processing Information

Processed by: B. Lynn Whitfield, June 2000

Baily, Joseph Cannon. Seaman A. Knapp: Schoolmaster of American Agriculture. New York: Columbia University Press, 1945.

Life. La Porte, Texas. 1957

Cline, Rodney. The Life and Work of Seaman A. Knapp. Ph.D. disseratation, George Peabody College for Teachers, 1936.

Southworth, Herbert R. A Survey of the Life of Seaman A. Knapp. M.A. Thesis, Texas Technological College, Lubbock, 1934.

Woodward, C. Vann. Origins of the New South, 1877-1913. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1951.

Collection Inventory

American Museum of Natural History to Literary Production Files

Box 1

Literary Production to Printed Materials

Box 2

Programs to Stationary Files

Box 3


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