Walter Tennyson Swingle

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Walter Tennyson Swingle (January 8, 1871 – January 19, 1952) was an American agricultural botanist who was born in Canaan, Pennsylvania and moved with his family to Kansas two years later. He graduated from the Kansas State Agricultural College in 1890, and studied at the University of Bonn in 1895-96 and 1898. He worked at the United States Department of Agriculture (1891), investigated subtropic fruits, established laboratories in Florida, became an agricultural explorer, and (after 1902) had charge of crop physiology and breeding investigations. He made several visits to the Mediterranean countries of Europe, to North Africa, and to Asia Minor, from where he introduced the date palm, pistachio nut, and other useful plants, and also the fig insect to make possible the cultivation of Smyrna figs in California. He also traveled to Asia, bringing back 100,000 Chinese volumes on botany to the Library of Congress.[1] Swingle developed the tangelo in 1897 in Eustis, Fla.[2]

Swingle married Lucie Romstaedt in 1901; she died in 1910. He married Maude Kellerman in 1915 and had four children,Stella and John (twins), Frank and Mary.

An extensive collection related to Swingle and his life, photos and works entitled the "Swingle Plant Anatomy Reference Collection" is hosted at the University of Miami.


  1. ^ "General Gazetteer of Two Counties and Three Passes". World Digital Library. 1522–1566. Retrieved 2013-06-27. 
  2. ^ Morton, Julia F. (1987). Fruits of warm climates. Miami, FL: J. F. Morton. pp. 158–160. Retrieved 28 February 2013. 
  3. ^ "Author Query for 'Swingle'". International Plant Names Index. 

External links[edit]

  • Walter Tennyson Swingle Collection University of Miami Libraries Special Collections Finding Aid. The collection contain papers, articles, correspondence and other materials that provide information on his botanical and plant introduction work as well as his personal life and travels.
  • Swingle Plant Anatomy Reference Collection The site features over 1,700 photomicrographs of plant parts from more than 250 species of plants collected from all over the world, plant structure animations, and information on Walter Tennyson Swingle.