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Wilbur H. Youngman Collection

Object Details

Youngman, Wilbur H. (Wilbur Hughes), 1896-1986
Germany (Territory under Allied occupation, 1945-1955)
United States Department of Agriculture
Urban gardens
Gardens -- Germany
Gardens -- France
Youngman, Wilbur H. (Wilbur Hughes), 1896-1986
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Wilbur H. Youngman Collection
Biographical / Historical
Wilbur Hughes Youngman (1896-1986) was born in Bloomington, Illinois. He received an undergraduate degree from the University of Illinois and a master's degree in farm management from Iowa State University. He was awarded the Purple Heart while serving with the Army in France during World War I. Youngman taught at Texas A&M University from 1924 to 1926. From 1926 to 1959, he worked as an Agricultural Economist (Seeds) for the Foreign Agricultural Services (FAS) at the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Following World War II, he worked as a civilian employee of the Food and Agriculture Section (Economics Branch) with the U.S. military to survey agricultural conditions and needs in the southern half of Germany and initiated commercial exports of seeds from the United States. Youngman was honored as a recipient of the USDA's Superior Service Award in 1959, the year he retired from that agency. Youngman was the garden editor of the Washington Star newspaper from 1938 to 1976. He authored Growing Your Trees (1966), published by the American Forestry Association, as well as several editions of the Washington Star Garden Book (1944-1976). He was recognized by the American Seed Trade Association (ASTA) as the best garden writer in America in 1958. Youngman was also awarded the Hull Certificate of Merit for Literary Horticulture Interest by the National Council of State Garden Clubs for the Washington Star Garden Book in 1969. Youngman joined Washington, D.C.'s Takoma Horticultural Club in 1928 and served as the club's president in 1930. In 1963, the club recognized him for his "outstanding services." He was president of the American Horticultural Society from 1947-1948 and later served on the Editorial Committee of AHS's quarterly magazine. He served as president of the Potomac Rose Society and as an accredited judge of the American Rose Society. Youngman died in 1986. His first wife, Alice Strode, died in 1961; his second wife, Fay Brodell, died in 1985.
0.17 Cubic feet
Archival Repository
Archives of American Gardens
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Smithsonian Institution, Archives of American Gardens, Wilbur H. Youngman collection.
Archives of American Gardens encourages the use of its archival materials for non-commercial, educational and personal use under the fair use provision of U.S. copyright law. Use or copyright restrictions may exist. It is incumbent upon the researcher to ascertain copyright status and assume responsibility for usage. All requests for duplication and use must be submitted in writing and approved by Archives of American Gardens. Please direct reference inquiries to the Archives of American Gardens:
Content Description
The collection consists of a notebook kept by and nearly 200 photographs photographed by Wilbur H. Youngman while he was working in Germany in 1946 on behalf of the United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Foreign Agricultural Services. The holdings document efforts to survey and facilitate farming and vegetable gardening efforts in the southern half of Germany shortly after World War II. In addition, there is a carbon copy of a typewritten letter dated June 23, 1946 from 'Phil' of the Food and Agriculture Branch, OMO-US, U.S. Army, Berlin that talks about trying to buy jeeps in post-war Europe. Youngman's notebook includes numerous notes about agricultural conditions and needs and various data and figures relating to seed requirements and yields, numbers of refugees, etc. The photos he took document sites he visited in Germany including garden plots and agricultural fields, cities and towns, and urban centers impacted by damage incurred during World War II. The collection also includes photos Youngman took of sites in France that he visited while in Europe, many of them 'tourist' type views.
Access to original archival materials by appointment only. Researcher must submit request for appointment in writing. Certain items may be restricted and not available to researchers. Please direct reference inquiries to the Archives of American Gardens:
Record ID
Berlin, statue in front of palace
Finding aid
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