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Robert J. O'Hara Papers

Identifier: MSS 0200

Scope and Contents

This collection is comprised of items donated by Dr. O'Hara concerning Peabody Park. Dr. O'Hara's correspondence consists of letters to Chancellor Patricia Sullivan concerning campus expansion and the future of Peabody Park. The student correspondence consists of letters addressing similar concerns to the Chancellor. Also included in this collection are essays and field books created by students enrolled in Dr. O'Hara's course on campus natural history, as well as photographs of Peabody Park and its various plant life as well as quartz samples from the park. Other items include a button, printed materials, quartz samples, and a report.


  • 1995 - 2001


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research; however, student materials are restricted.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright is retained by the creators of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information. Please see our Sensitive Materials Statement.

Biographical or Historical Information

Dr. Robert J. O'Hara, visiting Assistant Professor in the University of North Carolina at Greensboro's (UNCG) Department of Biology, received his BA. in Zoology and Classics from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1981, and his PhD in biology from Harvard University in 1989. After completion of his graduate work, he held a Smithsonian Institution postdoctoral fellowship in evolution at the National Museum of Natural History in Washington, DC and a National Science Foundation postdoctoral fellowship in the philosophy of science at the University of Wisconsin at Madison. His research and teaching interests are in natural history and the history and philosophy of science.

After coming to UNCG in 1992, Dr. O'Hara taught biology and the history of science in the Freshmen Seminar Program and the Honors Program. He was also Senior Tutor and principal founder of Cornelia Strong College, UNCG's second residential college and the first to be established in the University in more than twenty years.

Since 1996 Dr. O'Hara has taught a course on the natural history of the campus that introduced students to biological diversity and basic biological principles using UNCG's Peabody Park. He also conducted a biological survey of Peabody Park and has recorded (and in some cases photographed) more than 300 species of Peabody Park plants, animals and fungi.

Peabody Park was established in 1901 with a gift of $5,000 from George Foster Peabody (1952-1938). It was conceived as an educational park that would enrich the academic life of the University. Originally 125 acres in extent, the Park has been reduced over time due to university expansion.


1.20 Linear Feet (3 boxes)

Language of Materials



Dr. Robert J. O'Hara is a biology professor whose research and teaching interests include natural history and the history and philosophy of science. This collection dates from 1995 to 2001 and includes correspondence, essays, field books, photographs, printed materials, and other items concerning UNCG's Peabody Park.

Method of Acquisition

Donated by Robert J. O'Hara, August 2002.

Offensive Language Statement

The UNC Greensboro University Libraries collects, preserves, and makes accessible unique and historical materials for learning and research. The nature of historical materials is such that some material may represent positions, norms, and values that are offensive and objectionable. These materials represent the opinions and actions of their creators. By providing access to these records in our reading room and through our digital collections, we recognize that archives and rare books can play a vital role in holding those creators accountable and in helping us learn from the past.

Our finding aids and other collection descriptions may occasionally re-use language provided by creators or former holders of the materials, but we strive to place outdated or offensive terminology in context. That said, we recognize that we may not always make the right decision and welcome feedback from all sources so we can learn and adjust our practices. Please contact us at if you encounter problematic language in our finding aids or other collection description. We will review the language and, as appropriate, update it in a way that balances preservation of the original context with our ongoing commitment to describing materials with respectful and inclusive language.

Processing Information

Processed by Archives staff.

Robert J. O'Hara Papers
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Repository Details

Part of the Martha Blakeney Hodges Special Collections and University Archives Repository

P.O. Box 26170
320 College Ave.
Greensboro NC 27402-6170 US