CUP and the Fungi of China
In 2009 the Cornell Plant Pathology Herbarium sent a gift to the people of China. Our gift was 2278 specimens of fungi originally collected in China and sent to Cornell by two eminent Chinese mycologists who had studied at Cornell in the early 1900s, S.C. Teng and F.L. Tai.
You can read about the history of these fungi in this story reprinted from the Cornell Dept. of Plant Pathology Newsletter.
We initiated this project in 2004, when now-retired Curator Susan Gruff undertook the laborious process of dividing the CUP specimens and assembling their data. Current Curator Robert Dirig finished the process, double-checked every specimen, and packed and shipped the specimens in Fall 2009.
Consul Madame Yandong Liu and her distinguished delegation from China visited Cornell in April 2009 to celebrate the exchange. President Skorton and Vice-Provost Alice Pell participated in a Beijing ceremony hosted by the Chinese Academy of Sciences on November 7 2009.
We are pleased that we could protect these valuable specimens from destruction in past wars. And even more pleased that they are returned to their homeland where they will be more accessible to mycologists studying the diversity of fungi in China.
- History of these fungi [pdf file; 2005 Dept. of Plant Pathology Newsletter]
- Homeward Bound [Cornell Mushroom Blog piece on the April 2009 ceremony at Cornell]
- Fungi of China, the book by S.C. Teng (edited by R.P. Korf) published by Mycotaxon
- Fungi of China Exhibit [beautiful images of specimens from the Fungi of China collection taken by Cornell photographer Kent Loeffler]
- S.C. Teng [With two other mycologists near Taughannock Falls, in central New York, CUP photo collection]
- Original label for CUP-CH 1896
- Pamphlet on the Fungi of China collection and images [PDF]
- Professor Richard P. Korf [CUP Director Emeritus and Emeritus Professor of Mycology, Cornell University, CUP photo collection]
- Cornell's Professor H.H. Whetzel, Dr. J.C. Arthur (middle), and Professor H.M. Fitzpatrick in 1925. Whetzel and Fitzpatrick were Teng's mentors at Cornell. [CUP photo collection]
- The Cornell Plant Pathology Herbarium [our new collection building]
- Nov 7 2009 Ceremony in Beijing [photos and story in Chinese from the Institute of Microbiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences]
- Prized Mushroom Collection returns to China [Associated Press, November 2009]
- Chinese Delegration Visits Campus...[Cornell Chronicle, April 2009]
- Cornell University Returning Prized Mushrooms to China [Associated Press, April 2009]
- Cornell University returns fungi collection to China. [Consulate General of China]
- Fungi Saved from War Returned to China. National Public Radio, April 2009 [audio file/transcript featuring CUP Director Emeritus R.P. Korf]
A collection of preserved plant disease and fungus specimens documenting the world's biodiversity