Special Collections Department
403 Parks Library
Iowa State University
Ames, IA 50011-2140

MS 91
Pascal, Descartes (1870-1937)
Papers, 1890-1937, undated


Descriptive summary

creator: Pascal, Descartes (1870-1937)
title: Papers
dates: 1890-1937, undated
extent: 12.04 linear ft.  (1 document box, 1 half-document box, 16 glass plate negative boxes, and 1 oversize box)
collection number: MS 91
repository: Special Collections Department, Iowa State University.

 

Administrative information

access: Open for research
publication rights: Consult Head, Special Collections Department
preferred citation: Descartes Pascal Papers, MS 91, Special Collections Department, Iowa State University Library.

 

Biographical note

Descartes Pascal (1870-1937) was a photographer, farmer, and pioneer seed corn breeder.  Pascal was born in De Witt, Clinton County, Iowa, where he raised corn, shorthorn cattle, and Berkshire hogs.  Pascal became interested in corn breeding after 1900 and developed the Grand Champion ear of pure bred Reid’s Yellow Dent corn in 1907.  He also wrote and published articles on corn breeding; spoke at colleges, farmers’ institutes, and chautauquas; judged corn breeding contests in Iowa; and served as secretary to the Iowa Corn Growers Association.   Pascal was also a practicing photographer.

 

Collection description

The collection (1890-1937, undated) includes a scrapbook of newspaper clippings, pamphlets, and memorabilia related to Pascal’s achievements in corn breeding, and corn breeding in Iowa generally.  Also included are 180 glass plate negatives and two tintypes made by Pascal, documenting rural Iowa from the 1890s through the 1910s.  Included are family portraits (interior and exterior), family groups, school children, men and women with guns, acrobats, tight rope walkers, several people reenacting a duel, windmills, haystacks, barns, livestock, farmhouses, fields, small town streets, and construction of a school.  Use copies are available in box 19.

 

Organization

The collection is arranged in two series:
Series 1, Scrapbook, 1905-1937, undated

Series 2, Glass plate negatives and tintypes, 1890-1910, undated

 

Description of series

Series 1

Scrapbook

1905-1937, undated

extent: 1.41 linear ft.
description: Scrapbook of newspaper clippings, pamphlets, and memorabilia related to Pascal’s achievements in corn breeding, and corn breeding in Iowa generally.  Includes the original and a duplicate photocopy.

 

Container list

 

Box

Folder

Title

Dates

1

1

Scrapbook (original-- please use photocopy in box 19, folder 1)

1905-1937, undated

19

1

Scrapbook (photocopy)

1905-1973, undated

19

15

Loose photographs and postcard accompanying scrapbook (photocopies)

1907, undated

 

Description of series

Series 2

Glass plate negatives and tintypes

1890-1910, undated

extent: 10.63 linear ft.
description: The collection includes 180 glass plate negatives and two tintypes made by Pascal, documenting rural Iowa from the 1890s through the 1910s.  Included are family portraits (interior and exterior), family groups, school children, men and women with guns, acrobats, tight rope walkers, several people reenacting a duel, windmills, haystacks, barns, livestock, farmhouses, fields, small town streets, and construction of a school.  When noted, prints can be found in box 19.

 

Container list

 

Box

Folder

Title

Dates

2

1

Boy on horse (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

2

2

School group (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

2

3

Children and wash (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

2

4

Large group (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

2

5

Large group (5x8 in.)

undated

2

6

Large group (5x8 in.)

undated

2

7

Hay stacks (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

2

8

Farm house – Bussen place (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

2

9

Street scene of Grand Mound, Iowa (print available) (5x8 in.)

1890-1900

2

10

Street scene of Grand Mound, Iowa (print available) (5x8 in.)

1890-1900

2

11

Man with horse (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

2

12

Arcana Celestia (Lettie) Pascal (sister of Descartes) with horses (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

2

13

Store front (print available – see box 7, #1) (8x5 in.)

undated

2

14

Stable yard in Grand Mound, Iowa (print available) (5x8 in.)

1890-1900

2

15

Woman with sketch pad: Lucy Pascal (print available) (8x5 in.)

1890s

3

1

Family farm (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

3

2

Woman sketching: Lucy Pascal (print available) (8x5 in.)

undated

3

3

School group (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

3

4

Little girl (print available) (8x5 in.)

undated

3

5

Girls playing cards (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

3

6

Two sets of twins (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

3

7

Homestead (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

3

8

Farm scene (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

3

9

Descartes Pascal’s boyhood home near Grand Mound, Iowa (print available) (6.5x8.5 in.)

undated

3

10

Family group (print available – see box 11, #9) (5x8 in.)

undated

3

11

Commercial house (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

3

12

Threshing (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

3

13

Railroad track and cliff (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

3

14

Family group (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

3

15

School group (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

4

1

School group (print available – see box 4, #10) (5x8 in.)

1894

4

2

School group (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

4

3

Boysen family and farm house (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

4

4

Descartes Pascal and Pedro the dog (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

4

5

Later street scene of Grand Mound, Iowa (print available) (5x8 in.)

1900-1910

4

6

School group (5x8 in.)

undated

4

7

Wickliffe Cotton (cousin of Descartes) hunting with Lee Pascal (nephew of Descartes) and Pedro the dog (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

4

8

School group, including the teacher Lucy Pascal (sister of Descartes) who taught at this school located in Lincoln Township, Pocahontas county (print available) (5x8 in.)

1890-1900

4

9

Man on horse (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

4

10

School group, including the teacher Descartes Pascal who taught at this school near Pocahontas, Iowa (print available) (5x8 in.)

1894

4

11

Three children on porch (5x8 in.)

undated

4

12

Horse (5x8 in.)

undated

4

13

School group (5x8 in.)

undated

4

14

Duel reenactment (5x8 in.)

undated

4

15

Group (5x8 in.)

undated

5

1

River and farm (5x8 in.)

undated

5

2

Group (5x8 in.)

undated

5

3

John Pascal and threshing machine (5x8 in.)

undated

5

4

Man and woman on horseback (5x8 in.)

undated

5

5

Letty playing croquet (5x8 in.)

undated

5

6

Binder (5x8 in.)

undated

5

7

Cutting oats with binder (5x8 in.)

undated

5

8

Pascal homestead (from back) (5x8 in.)

undated

5

9

Grand Mound, Iowa (5x8 in.)

undated

5

10

Man balancing table (8x5 in.)

undated

5

11

Man balancing another man (8x5 in.)

undated

5

12

Large group (5x8 in.)

undated

5

13

Family (5x8 in.)

undated

5

14

Man (8x5 in.)

undated

5

15

Family (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

6

1

Talitha Cumi Pascal (8.5x6.5 in.)

undated

6

2

Talitha Cumi Pascal (8.5x6.5 in.)

undated

6

3

Aylett Pascal (8.5x6.5 in.)

undated

6

4

Portrait of a man (8.5x6.5 in.)

undated

6

5

River scene (5x8 in.)

undated

6

6

House (5x8 in.)

undated

6

7

River scene (5x8 in.)

undated

6

8

Tornado damage in Grand Mound, Iowa (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

6

9

Clinton, Iowa (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

6

10

Threshing oats (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

6

11

House with small group (5x8 in.)

undated

6

12

Group at edge of woods (5x8 in.)

undated

6

13

Boy in coonskin cap with gun (5x7 in.)

undated

6

14

Boy on horse (5x8 in.)

undated

6

15

George Pascal II with team of horses (print available) (5x8 in.)

1893-1894

7

1

Store front of M. E. Burckhalter Manufacturing Co. in Pocahontas, Iowa (print available)

undated

7

2

George Pascal II with ponies (print available)

undated

7

3

Descartes Pascal and Pedro the dog  (print available)

undated

7

4

Street scene of Pocahontas, Iowa (print available)

undated

7

5

Pascal homestead (tintype) (4x6 in.)

undated

7

6

Woman with child, portrait (tintype) (6x8 in.)

undated

8

1

Young man, portrait (5x7 in.)

undated

8

2

Homestead of George W. and Talitha Pascal (print available) (4.25x6.5 in.)

undated

8

3

Portrait (print available) (7x5 in.)

undated

8

4

Two gentlemen (7x5 in.)

undated

8

5

William H. Hunting, Civil War service certificate (7x5 in.)

1890

8

6

Grace Cotton’s graduation presents (7x5 in.)

1891

8

7

Bossen’s place (May) – bought by Descartes Pascal in the 1900s (5x7 in.)

1895

8

8

Pascal family (print available) (5x7 in.)

undated

8

9

Descartes’ sisters’ graduation from Cornell College (print available) (7x5 in.)

undated

9

1

Ice skaters (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

9

2

Later street scene of Grand Mound, Iowa (print available)

1900-1910

9

3

Pascal house, Grand Mound, Iowa (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

9

4

Pascal farm, Grand Mound, Iowa (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

9

5

Boys on horse drawn sled: Lee Pascal, Jasper Babcock, Percy Pascal, and Jim Townsen (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

9

6

Pascal house near Grand Mound, Iowa: George W. Pascal, Talitha Cumi, Laura, and Lettie (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

9

7

Small group with baby (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

9

8

Bicycle club (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

9

9

School group (5x8 in.)

undated

9

10

Pascal children (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

9

11

Barber (print available) (8x5 in.)

undated

9

12

Two women and a child

undated

9

13

John Pascal with crew of men and horse drawn road grader (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

9

14

Della M. and Bertha M. Cotton (print available) (8x5 in.)

undated

9

15

Children with wash (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

10

1

Small group (4x5 in.)

undated

10

2

Crowd watching acrobat (5x4 in.)

undated

10

3

Dog on steps (5x4 in.)

undated

10

4

Standing man (5x4 in.)

undated

10

5

Seated man (5x4 in.)

undated

10

6

Man and cats in front of building (5x4 in.)

undated

10

7

Juggler (5x4 in.)

undated

10

8

Man smoking pipe (5x4 in.)

undated

10

9

Two seated people (5x4 in.)

undated

10

10

Little girl seated on wagon (5x4 in.)

undated

10

11

Group of four children (5x4 in.)

undated

10

12

Group of three people – one with bicycle (4x5 in.)

undated

10

13

Tightrope walker (4x5 in.)

undated

10

14

Small group (4x5 in.)

undated

10

15

Woman with hat (5x4 in.)

undated

10

16

Group of four children (5x4 in.)

undated

10

17

Man with two horses (4x5 in.)

undated

10

18

Two women (5x4 in.)

undated

10

19

Farm house (print available) (3.25x4.25 in.)

undated

10

20

Baby and bath (5x4 in.)

undated

10

21

Baby in wash tub: George Pascal III (print available) (5x4 in.)

undated

10

22

George Pascal III as a baby (5x4 in.)

undated

10

23

Man holding small table (5x4 in.)

undated

10

24

George W. Pascal II and Descartes Pascal (4x5 in.)

undated

10

25

George W. Pascal II and Descartes Pascal

undated

10

26

George Pascal II as a baby (5x4 in.)

undated

10

27

Chapel, Cornell College (lantern slide) (5x4 in.)

undated

10

28

George Pascal II as a baby (5x4 in.)

undated

10

29

Bowman Hall, Cornell College (lantern slide) (4x5 in.)

undated

10

30

George Pascal II as a baby (5x4 in.)

undated

10

31

George Pascal II as a baby (5x4 in.)

undated

10

32

Man and dog (5x4 in.)

undated

10

33

Children (print available) (5x4 in.)

undated

10

34

Mixing cement (print available) (4x5 in.)

undated

10

35

Unidentified man (print available) (5x4 in.)

undated

10

36

George and Descartes Pascal (print available) (4x5 in.)

undated

10

37

Baby in wash tub: George Pascal III (print available) (5x4 in.)

undated

10

38

Lee Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

1890

10

39

Lee and Percy Pascal with Pedro the dog (4.25x3.25 in.)

1890

10

40

Laura Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

1890

10

41

Pedro the dog (4.25x3.25 in.)

1890

10 42 Unidentified baby (5x4 in.) undated

11

1

Bossin farm, Clinton county (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

11

2

J. R. Merrill store (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

11

3

School group, Clinton county (print available) (5x8 in.)

1900-1910

11

4

Family farm (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

11

5

School group (print available) (5x8 in.)

1895

11

6

John Pascal’s home yard (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

11

7

An entertainer demonstrating self defense: Professor Carter (print available) (8x5 in.)

1895

11

8

Man balancing chair: Professor Carter (print available) (8x5 in.)

undated

11

9

Family group (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

11

10

School group (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

11

11

Two dandies (print available) (8x5 in.)

undated

11

12

Family farm (print available) (8x5 in.)

undated

11

13

School group (print available) (8x5 in.)

undated

11

14

Railroad track at cliffs near DeWitt (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

11

15

School group (print available) (5x8 in.)

undated

12

1

Percy Pascal and Pedro the dog (4.25x3.25 in.)

1890

12

2

John Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

3

Aylett Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

4

Portrait of an unidentified man (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

5

Laura Talitha Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

6

Descartes Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

7

Descartes Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

8

Laura Talitha Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

9

John Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

10

Descartes Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

11

Arcana Celestia Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

12

Aylett Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

13

John Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

14

John Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

15

Celestia Cotton Packard (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

16

One of the Cotton family (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

17

Lucy Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

18

Descartes Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

12

19

Descartes Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

13

1

Uncle Aylett Pascal (4.125x3.25 in.)

undated

13

2

Uncle Aylett Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

13

3

Talitha Cumi Pascal and Diophantes (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

13

4

John Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

13

5

John Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

13

6

John Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

13

7

Arcana Celestia Pascal ("Letty") (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

13

8

Aunt Celestia Packard (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

13

9

Cousin Kate Cox (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

13

10

Talitha Cumi Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

13

11

John Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

13

12

Talitha Cumi Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

13

13

Talitha Cumi Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

13

14

Arcana Celestia Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

13

15

Lucy Pascal (4.125x3.25 in.)

undated

13

16

Lucy Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

13

17

Aylett Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

14

1

Aylett Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

14

2

John Pascal (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

14

3

Uncle Aylett Cotton (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

14

4

Uncle Aylett Cotton (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

14

5

Uncle Aylett Cotton (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

14

6

Man in buggy drawn by two horses (print available) (4x5 in.)

undated

14

7

Farm building (print available) (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

14

8

Building (print available) (5x4 in.)

undated

14

9

Farm house (print available) (4.25x3.25 in.)

undated

15

1

Teacher’s Institute group photo (10x12 in.)

undated

15

2

Teacher’s Institute (Pocahontas) (10x12 in.)

undated

15

3

Farmyard scene (10x12 in.)

undated

15

4

Costume ball (10x12 in.)

undated

16

1

John Pascal farm in Pocahontas, Iowa (10x12 in.)

undated

16

2

Possibly church group (12x10 in.)

undated

16

3

School group (Dewitt, Iowa) (12x10 in.)

undated

16

4

School group (10x12 in.)

undated

17

1

Large group (10x12 in.)

undated

17

2

Large group (10x12 in.)

undated

17

3

School group (10x12 in.)

undated

17

4

Farm (10x12 in.)

undated

18

1

Group (10x12 in.)

undated

18

2

Bouquets (12x10 in.)

undated

18

3

Family farm (10x12 in.)

undated

18

4

Farm (10x12 in.)

undated

18

5

Farm (10x12 in.)

undated

19

2

Reference copies of images in box 2 (12- 8x10 b/w photographs)

1890-1900, undated

19

3

Reference copies of images in box 3 (18- 8x10 b/w photographs)

undated

19

4

Reference copies of images in box 4 (8- 8x10 b/w photographs)

1890-1910, undated

19

5

Reference copies of images in box 5 (1- 8x10 b/w photograph)

undated

19

6

Reference copies of images in box 6 (8- 8x10 b/w photographs)

1893-1894, undated

19

7

Reference copies of images in box 7 (8- 8x10 b/w photographs)

undated

19

8

Reference copies of images in box 8 (1- 5x7 b/w, 7- 8x10 b/w photographs)

undated

19

9

Reference copies of images in box 9 (22- 8x10 b/w photographs)

1900-1910, undated

19

10

Reference copies of images in box 10 (3- 3.5x5 b/w, 8- 5x7 b/w photographs)

undated

19

11

Reference copies of images in box 11 (28- 8x10 b/w photographs)

1895-1910, undated

19

12

Reference copies of images in box 14 (3- 3.5x5 b/w, 2- 5x7 b/w photographs)

undated

19

13

Prints of Pascal and illustration of corn contest trophy (3- 8x10 b/w photographs)

1907 circa

19

14

Descriptions of some images

undated

19 15 Loose photographs and postcard accompanying scrapbook (copies) 1907, undated
19 16 Unidentified photograph (1 b/w) undated