John R. Gregg papers, bulk 1947-2009

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Gregg, John, Dr. and Duke University. Department of Zoology -- Faculty
John R. Gregg, former professor of zoology, was born December 16, 1916. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Alabama, and then completed a Ph.D. in biology at Princeton in 1946. For a decade, he served on the faculty at Columbia University before coming to Duke in 1957. He stayed at Duke until his retirement in 1986. Gregg was also a skilled longbow archer and his papers contain some information about archery. In 2009, he died at the age of 92. The John Gregg Papers contain mostly information about Dr. Gregg's research and work including materials related to the courses he taught. His interest in archery is also reflected. The collection also contains significant correspondence between Gregg and J.H. Woodger, an influential 20th century British theoretical biologist and philosopher of biology.
4 Linear Feet
Materials in English
Collection ID:
University Archives Record Group:
29 -- Papers of Faculty, Staff, and Associates
29 -- Papers of Faculty, Staff, and Associates > 02 -- Individuals


Scope and content:

The collection contains the academic and personal papers of John R. Gregg, Professor Emeritus of Zoology at Duke University. The collection includes correspondence between Gregg and leading biologists such as Joseph Henry Woodger and Arstrid Lindenmayer and notes and drafts of Gregg's many publications, research notes on a variety of subjects in Biology and Zoology, and materials related to lectures given by Gregg. The collection also reflects Gregg's experiences as a professor of Zoology at Duke University with lecture notes and class materials relating to classes he taught. Materials also include personal papers relating to Gregg's passionate interest in archery, including blueprints and designs of archery equipment created by Gregg.

Biographical / historical:

John R. Gregg (1916-2009) was a Biological Science Professor Emeritus at Duke University. After earning an undergraduate degree from the University of Alabama and his PhD from Princeton University, Gregg served as a professor in the Duke University Zoology department from 1957 to his retirement in 1986. During his time at Duke, Gregg served as the acting chair of the Zoology department chair from 1958-1959 and as director of graduate studies from1968-1971. Gregg authored 33 publications during his academic career including two books, The Language of Taxonomy (1954) and Form and Strategy (1963). His work on taxonomic systems in The Language of Taxonomy led to the development of the "Gregg Paradox".

During the summer of 1967, he led the Undergraduate Institute for Theoretical Biology sponsored by NASA. During his career, Gregg collaborated closely with British biologist Joseph Henry Woodger, the developer of the influential Axiomatic Method.In addition to his scientific work, Gregg was extremely passionate about archery and donated his collection of antique bows and other artifacts to the Smithsonian Museum.

Acquisition information:
Transfer; October 22, 2012
Processing information:

Processed by Elizabeth J. Hannigan, July 2015

Rules or conventions:
Describing Archives: A Content Standard


Click on terms below to find related finding aids on this site. For other related materials in the Duke University Libraries, search for these terms in the Catalog.

Zoology -- Study and teaching (Higher)
Numerical taxonomy
Duke University. Department of Biology.


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Collection is open for research.

Terms of access:

Copyright for official university records is held by Duke University; all other copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

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Preferred citation:

[Identification of item], in the John R. Gregg Papers, Duke University Archives, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.