These papers contain notes and working drafts of Davies's book, as well as his correspondence with professional and amateur botanists regarding Shortia Galacifolia. For the most part, the folders and the material in them are in the order as they were originally received by the University Archives. Some folder titles have been added, or altered for clarity. Other material on the history of the Department of Biology includes an oral history interview with William Furnish and the personnel folders of various faculty members, especially that of Austin R. Middleton. Material on Short abounds, as Davies's research notes testify. A large collection of Short Papers is available at the Filson Club, Louisville, Kentucky.
Percy Albert Davies (1896-1961) finished his Ph.D. at Harvard University in the spring of 1926 and that fall took a teaching position in the Department of Biology at the University of Louisville. A native of Colorado, Davies attended Colorado A & M where he completed the B.S. and M.S. degrees (1922 and 1923) before entering Harvard University. A specialist in botany, Davies served as head of the Department of Biology at the University from 1931 until 1956 and as chairman of the Division of Natural Sciences from 1944 until his death by a heart attack in January, 1961.
During the 1940s, Davies developed an interest in Shortia galacifolia, a plant native to the American southeast. The botanist Asa Gray (1810-1888) had named Shortia in honor of his friend and colleague, Dr. Charles Wilkins Short (1794-1863), professor of materia medica at the Louisville Medical Institute and at the University of Louisville from 1838 until 1849. Davies began a study of the history and botanical characteristics of the plant with the idea of publishing a book on Charles Wilkins Short and the plant named in his honor. Although Davies published several articles out of these studies, his book never saw print.
[Identification of item], Percy Albert Davies Papers, Archives and Special Collections, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY. https://archivescatalog.library.louisville.edu/repositories/2/resources/209 Accessed October 30, 2020.