Skip to main content

Kimberly G. Smith Papers

Identifier: MC 2348

Content Description

Kimberly Smith was a professor of biology at the University of Arkansas for 37 years (1981-2018) specializing in ornithology. This collection contains items documenting his career and research accomplished shortly before and during his time at U of A. It heavily features collected research data on terrestrial biology, with topics such as; cicadas, birds, and black bears. Published research by Smith and his students, field note journals, presentations, posters, photographs, slides, correspondence, and digital files are also found in the collection.


  • Creation: 1873-2018
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1971-2018


Conditions Governing Access

Access restrictions apply: The last 5 folders in the collection are restricted for 80 years from the date of creation.

Please call (479) 575-8444 or email at least two weeks in advance of your arrival to ensure availability of the materials.

Conditions Governing Use

No Use Restrictions Apply.

No Interlibrary Loan.

Standard Federal Copyright Laws Apply (U.S. Title 17).

Biographical / Historical

Kimberly Gray Smith was an American biologist born in Manchester, Connecticut in 1948. Smith received his Bachelor of Science at Tufts University (1971), a Master of Science from the University of Arkansas (U of A) (1975), and Doctor of Philosophy from Utah State University (1982). He served as research associate at Manomet Bird Observatory in Maine from 1977-1980 and was a post-graduate research ecologist at Bodega Marine Lab at the University of California-Berkley in 1980 and 1981. Smith started an official teaching position at U of A in 1981 as Visiting Assistant Professor of Zoology and served in various assistant teaching roles at U of A and Utah State while earning his degrees. In 1985, he became Assistant Professor of Zoology, followed by several promotions which led to him becoming Professor of Biological Sciences in 1992. From 2004 to 2008, Smith served as Departmental Chair of Biological Sciences and in 2009 he was promoted to University Professor of Biological Sciences. In 2015, he was promoted to Distinguished Professor.

Smith's research focused primarily on terrestrial ecology, including black bears, birds, and bugs. He and his students spent decades collecting data on those species, the results of which can be found in publications, field journals and notes, and student work. Smith received many honors and awards throughout his academic career. Some highlights include being a member of the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society, J. William Fulbright College research awards, becoming a Fellow of the American Ornithologists' Union (AOU), Commissioner of the Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission, and Treasurer for the Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology. Smith was also involved in several professional organizations and served a variety of roles such as officer, editor, and organizer. From 2000 to 2004, he was editor in chief of "The Auk" (renamed "Ornithology" in 2021, a peer-reviewed scientific journal from the American Ornithological Society). He also worked collaboratively for decades on the Arkansas Breeding Bird Atlas. Smith published a wide array of articles, book chapters, and papers at professional meetings regarding biology from the 1970s until his death in 2018, having published approximately 300 professional publications. He taught over a dozen courses in Zoology and Biology at U of A, and consistently received high marks and praises during annual student evaluations of his teaching. Smith taught at the University for 37 years before his death on April 9th, 2018.


18.5 Linear Feet (14 boxes and 1 tube)

468 Megabytes (442 files, 42 folders)

Language of Materials



There was little existent organization in the original donation. Most items were foldered and labeled, though there were several items that were not in folders and about half of the folders did not have titles. Materials clearly related to each other were in disparate boxes and the archivist determined that imposing a new order on the collection would be the best course of action to make it accessible to researchers. The materials are organized by subject and alphabetically within each subject. The slides in boxes 11 and 13-14 were already arranged, and most were categorized and labeled by Kim Smith. The archivist maintained the original arrangement and titles of groups of slides and created titles when none were given. Digital materials are arranged alphabetically.

The subjects are as follows:

  • American Ornithologists Union (AOU): Box 1 File 1
  • Arkansas Breeding Bird Atlas: Box 1 File 2-Box 3 File 6
  • Ornithology Research: Box 3 File 7-Box 5 File 6
  • Field Notes/Journals: Box 5 Files 7-24
  • Cicada and Bird Research: Box 5 File 25-Box 6 File 18
  • Biology Research: Box 6 File 19-Box 7 File 21
  • Authored by Smith: Box 7 File 22-Box 9 File 4
  • Projects: Box 9 Files 5-12
  • Student Materials: Box 9 File 13-Box 10 File 5
  • General Materials: Box 10 File 6-Box 11 File 2
  • Correspondence: Box 11 Files 3-8
  • Digital Materials: Box 11 File 9
  • Slides: Box 11 Files 10-25 and Boxes 13-14
  • Data Sheets: Box 12 Files 1-5
  • Posters: Tube 1
  • Born Digital Items: Digital Folders

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The Kimberly G. Smith Papers was donated to the Special Collections Department by Peggy Smith, wife of Kimberly Smith, on January 10, 2019.

Existence and Location of Copies

Files from discs, loaded into Archivematica.

Processing Information

Nathaniel Guttenberg, February, 2024.


Kimberly G. Smith Papers
Nathaniel Guttenberg
February, 2024
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Department Repository

University of Arkansas Libraries
365 N. McIlroy Avenue
Fayetteville AR 72701 United States
(479) 575-8444