Leuman Maurice Waugh collection - Correspondence with Alaska Survey Data and Expedition Logistics, 1934

About the Project

Help us transcribe “Correspondence with Alaska Survey Data and Expedition Logistics, 1934” (Box 3, Folder 2) from the Leuman Maurice Waugh Collection!

Leuman Maurice Waugh (1877-1972) was a dentist who studied and treated Indigenous populations in the Bering Sea and Alaska Arctic regions. Waugh received his D.D.S. from the University of Buffalo in 1900. Waugh married Helen "Esty" Marshall, and had a son, Donald (also a dentist), and a daughter, Dorothy.

Over the course of five summers, Waugh privately carried out a Labrador study between 1921 and 1927. In 1929, Waugh volunteered to undertake Alaskan studies on dental health research among the Inuit for the U.S. Public Health Service, which appointed Waugh Dental Director (Reserve). While collaborating with the U.S. Public Health Service, Waugh studied twelve Alaskan Inuit communities between 1929 and 1938. He was the first dental officer in the U.S. Public Service assigned to the Coast Guard Cutter Northland's cruise area of the Bering Sea and Alaska Arctic regions. During his trips, Waugh compiled data on the teeth, mouth, and diet of Indigenous communities. In addition, he took many photographs and films of both dental subjects and Indigenous communities.

In 1936, Waugh was appointed to a position with the Alaska Health Service by the U.S. Secretary of the Interior via the Commissioner of Indian Affairs. This position allowed him to further his studies of tooth decay throughout Alaska and the Bering Sea region. Waugh's 1937 expedition included three dentists, a physician and a nurse, and involved extensive air travel in small planes. Waugh spent the remainder of his professional career at Columbia University, where he acted as Chief of Orthodontia and Director of the Department of Orthodontics. Waugh continued to be active in professional organizations after his retirement.

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(4 out of 5)

Level 1 --- BEGINNER

Content: all typed
Language: English
Format: letters, diaries, flyers, pamphlets, and one-page documents
Subject Area Expertise/Special Skills: none required

Level 2

Content: mostly typed, handwritten in print, or otherwise very clearly written/readable
Language: English
Format: memorabilia, advertisements, image captions, telegrams, diaries, letters, notes
Subject Area Expertise/Special Skills: none required


Content: typed and handwritten materials in cursive or print
Language: English
Format: newspaper clippings, scrapbooks, letters/diaries/notes that may include annotations or margin notes
Subject Area Expertise/Special Skills: experience reading cursive writing may be useful

Level 4

Content: handwritten materials, primarily in cursive or somewhat difficult to read (predominantly from the 19th and 20th centuries) , audio recordings that are relatively easy to hear/decipher, and scientific materials
Language: English and/or other languages that use Roman script but may require the use of diacritics (French, Spanish, German, Italian, etc.)
Format: audio recordings, letters, diaries, notes and other written materials, projects with templated fields and special instructions
Subject Area Expertise/Special Skills: some knowledge of non-English Roman-character/script languages and diacritics may be useful, as well as experience reading cursive handwriting. A general knowledge or familiarity with scientific terminology.

Level 5 --- ADVANCED

Content: handwritten materials in cursive (from the 19th century or earlier) or in a non-Roman script language, audio recordings that are difficult to hear or are not in English, specialty materials/projects such as numismatics projects and the Project Phaedra notebooks 
Language: foreign languages that use non-Roman characters (Chinese, Japanese, Arabic, Greek/Cyrillic, Native American and Indigenous languages, etc.) and English 
Format: audio recordings, columned data/tables, manuscripts, letters, diaries, notes, currency sheets, coins
Subject Area Expertise/Special Skills: knowledge of a specific language and access to a keyboard with the characters in that language may be required for certain projects. Experience reading cursive handwriting and familiarity with 19th century (or prior) handwriting and conventions/abbreviations may be useful, as well as knowledge of scientific terminology, astrophysics data, or linguistics.

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