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John Clark Salyer field journal

 Collection — Box: 1
Identifier: MS-0677

Scope and Content

The collection (1932) consists of a handwritten field journal belonging to John Clark Salyer while working for the Iowa Fish and Game Commission. The journal primarily documents Iowa’s fish populations and habitats, but also includes descriptions of local people and anecdotes on Iowa’s place and river names. The journal refers to locations mainly in the north-central and northeastern portions of Iowa.


  • 1932

Language of Materials


Access Restrictions

Open for research.

Use/Re-use Restrictions

Consult Special Collections and University Archives


John Clark Salyer II was born in Higgensville, Missouri, on August 16, 1902. He received his B.A. (1927) from Central College in Fayette, Missouri and his M.S. (1930) from the University of Michigan. He taught science in the Parsons, Kansas public schools and then became Professor of Biology at Bethel College in Newton, Kansas. He accepted a job with the Iowa Fish and Game Commission in 1933.

Salyer was recruited by the Chief of the Bureau of Biological Survey, Jay Norwood "Ding" Darling, to oversee the management of national wildlife refuges. He accepted a position with the Bureau in 1934 and was given the task to develop a national waterfowl management program using the conservation principles of wildlife management endorsed by Aldo Leopold. He retired in 1961 after increasing the national wildlife refuge system in size from 1.5 million acres to nearly 29 million acres.

Salyer became known as the "Father of the National Wildlife Refuge System" for his tireless efforts as head of the Division of Wildlife Refuges. After his retirement, Salyer remained active with the Fish and Wildlife Service in an advisory capacity until his death on August 16, 1966.


0.21 Linear Feet (1 half-document box)

Processing Information

Released on 2018-11-01.

MS-0677. John Clark Salyer field journal, 1932
December 12, 2018
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