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Arthur L. Bakke papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: RS 13/5/54

Scope and Content

The collection (1914-1972, undated) contains biographical information, committee records, correspondence, field books, and published and unpublished papers. Additionally, the collection includes awards, information about the Department of Botany at Iowa State, and materials related to professional organizations Bakke was affiliated with.

Correspondence files contain personal and professional letters from colleagues and from organizations Bakke was affiliated with. Correspondents include Iowa State faculty, fellow researchers, former students, and others seeking expertise on plant pathology and weed control. The field books document his work at the Iowa Agricultural Experiment Station's Hawarden Farm and at research plots on the grounds of the State Hospital in Cherokee, Iowa (Cherokee Mental Health Institute).

Also of interest are the State Fair Committee files which contain materials related to the preparation of Iowa State College's exhibit at the annual Iowa State Fair. The files include meeting minutes, correspondence, suggested layouts for the exhibits, and photographs of the displays.


  • Creation: 1914-1972, undated

Language of Materials


Access Restrictions

Open for research.

Use/Re-use Restrictions

Consult Special Collections and University Archives


Arthur Lawrence Bakke was born in Horace, North Dakota, on June 26, 1886, to parents Martin and Angnette Sundt Bakke. In 1893, he moved with his family to Forest City, Iowa, where he graduated from high school. He then enrolled in Iowa State College (University) and received a B.S. (1909) and an M.S. (1911) in plant pathology and bacteriology. He received his Ph.D. (1917) from the University of Chicago in plant physiology, plant pathology, and physiological chemistry.

As a plant physiologist and instructor, Dr. Bakke spent two years (1909-1910) at Elgin Academy (Illinois). From there he was hired by Iowa State as an Instructor (1910-1911) of botany. He was promoted to Assistant Professor (1912-1916), Associate Professor (1917-1924) and Professor (1925-1956). Bakke was also a collaborator with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Botany and Plant Pathology Section, as a Research Professor (1937-1956).

Bakke devoted his professional energies to weed control. He made significant contributions to weed control in Iowa with his studies in root reserves in perennial weeds, notably European bind weed and leafy spurge, and with his early work with sodium chlorate and Atlacide. In 1944, Bakke was helpful in the organization of the North Central Weed Control Conference, and served as the organization's Research Committee Chairman as well as in other capacities. In 1954, he was elected honorary member of the organization. Bakke was also active in the development of the American Society of Plant Physiologists.

Bakke married Josephine Arnquist on August 25, 1929. Josephine was the Director of Girls 4-H Club Work in Iowa. She died on August 24, 1948. Bakke later married Jeanette Donhowe Henderson on July 19, 1952. Bakke died on December 25, 1972 in Ames, Iowa, and is buried in the Iowa State University Cemetery.


3.99 Linear Feet (9 document boxes, 1 half-document box, 1 map case folder)


The collection is organized Alphabetically.

Items in related collections

RS 13/5. Iowa State University. Department of Botany records, 1886-2014

Processing Information

Released on 2018-11-01.

RS 13/5/54. Arthur L. Bakke papers, 1914-1972, undated
January 23, 2019
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections and University Archives Repository

403 Parks Library
701 Morrill Road
Iowa State University
Ames Iowa 50011-2102 United States
(515) 294-6672