Physical Facilities and Equipment
The Herbarium is located in Upham Hall on the Miami University Oxford Campus. Offices and research laboratories of both the Curator and Assistant Curator are in Upham Hall adjacent to the Herbarium. In the same building are the Anthropology Museum and the Hefner Zoology Museum. The Limper Geology Museum is housed in nearby Shideler Hall. The herbarium facility was designed specifically for use as a herbarium. The Herbarium is equipped with 330 herbarium cases, a drying cabinet, a fumigation ultra-cold cabinet, research-grade compound microscopes, numerous dissecting microscopes, and eight networked computers equipped with bar-code readers and IrisPen scanners that allow for direct scanning of typescript label data into the database; handwritten data must still be entered by keystrokes. A refrigerator containing silica gel dried material for DNA extraction is housed in the assistant curator's lab.
The Herbarium houses the W. Hardy Eshbaugh Herbarium Library of over 20,000 volumes, which includes many important reference works, floras, monographs, and periodicals. A library fund and the Turrell Herbarium Fund assure continued growth of the Eshbaugh Library. The library is computerized, and holdings are listed in Miami University's library catalog. There is an extensive and expanding reprint collection of over 125,000 items, as well as a supporting map collection.
In addition to these resources, there are various financial commitments made by Miami University and the Department of Botany to the Herbarium: 1) the Curator's salary; 2) a supply budget; 3) a herbarium graduate student assistantship; 4) wages that support hourly workers (usually 1-2 workers per semester for 5-10 hours per week and 1-2 workers in the summer for 10-15 hours each per week, in addition to those supported by the Williamson Fund); and 5) equipment money.
The department has four endowed accounts within the Miami University Foundation that directly and exclusively benefit the herbarium:1) the Willard Sherman Turrell Herbarium Fund; 2) the Gene P. Williamson Herbarium Fund; 3) the W. Hardy Eshbaugh Herbarium Library Fund; and 4) the Richard A. Howard Fund.
The Willard Sherman Turrell Herbarium Fund was established to support the research activities of the Herbarium. The fund is used to make research grants to faculty and students (to date 212 grants have been made, totaling nearly $390,000), to support 2-3 visiting lecturers annually, and to enhance the herbarium facilities, including the associated library.
The Gene P. Williamson Herbarium Fund was established in 1992 to support the hiring of 2-3 undergraduate workers on an hourly basis in the Willard Sherman Turrell Herbarium.
The W. Hardy Eshbaugh Herbarium Library Fund was established in 2006 and provides funds for remodeling the herbarium library facilities; it also created an on-going fund for the purchase of taxonomic, systematic, and floristic literature.
The Richard A. Howard Fund was established in honor of Dr. Howard (MU alumnus and Harvard professor) by his children after his death. It funds botanical fieldwork in the Caribbean region.