It takes a gifted artist to become a great teacher and those who dare to teach never cease to learn.

Sunday, February 10, 2019

The Historic Palmer Wax Apple Collection

 Each of the apples are labelled and numbered by Ms. Palmer. This variety is Stayman's Winesap collected from Canyon City, CO; the date on the card is February 1905 (grower J.E.Snow)

Colorado State University Morton Library's Special Collections houses an unique set of more than 80 wax apples with related illustrations created by Miriam A. Palmer in the early 20th century.
One of the exceptional illustrations by Ms. M. Palmer (watercolor and graphite)

Ms. Miriam Augusta Palmer was born in Pennsylvania on August 28, 1878. She enrolled in the University of Kansas and received her M.A. in Art in 1904. She became associated with the Colorado Experiment Station of Colorado Agricultural College as an Illustrator and Instructor of Drawing in 1904. 
Ms. Palmer was considered an expert for her ability to illustrate insects, but also to create life-like wax models of fruit. Most of the wax apple models of Colorado varieties were created in 1905 and 1906. 
In 1925 Ms. Palmer earned her M.S. in entomology from Colorado Agricultural College where she served as associate professor of entomology and zoology until 1951. She was a recognized world authority on aphids. 
Plate I from the Aphids of the Rocky Mountain Region, text and illustrations by Miriam A. Palmer , 1952 (The Thomas Say Foundation, Volume V,  452 pages)

Colorado State University honored Ms. Palmer with the D. Sc. Honorary degree in 1959, she died in Fort Collins in 1977.
CSU is in process of digitizing this amazing collection to make the history of the early Colorado apple varieties available for wider audiences.

Please see more images of the Palmer Collection by clicking here

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