Mark Shoemaker papers
Mark M. Shoemaker (1898-1983) was a professor of horticulture at the University of Maryland, a campus planner, and a landscape designer. Shoemaker's papers contain reports, correspondence, drafts of lectures, radio scripts, news clippings, maps, sketches, and photographs documenting his landscape design work for the University and various agencies of the United States government. The collection also includes some of the personal papers of A. S. Thurston whose duties at the University of Maryland Shoemaker assumed.
Important Information for Users of the Collection
This collection is open for research.
Mark Shoemaker papers, Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries.
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Mark Mercer Shoemaker was employed by the University of Maryland, College Park, from 1931 until 1963 in various positions. While he worked for the Extension Service and the Departments of Horticulture and Physical Plant, his lasting contribution to the University was his role in the master plan for major construction on campus from 1946 to 1954. During his tenure at the University of Maryland, College Park, the campus grew from 14 buildings in 1931 to 187 in 1963.
Mark M. Shoemaker was born on May 9, 1898, in Washington, D.C. He graduated from McKinley High School in the District of Columbia and earned two degrees from the University of Michigan, the B.A. in 1921 and the Master of Landscape Design in 1922. For nine years, he was in private business in the Washington area; in 1926, he had the distinction of designing the landscaping for the Sesquicentennial International Exposition in Philadelphia to celebrate U.S. independence.
In 1931, the Maryland Extension Service hired Shoemaker as an assistant landscape specialist. By 1937, he was an associate professor of landscaping. His responsibilities included working with garden clubs, horticulture societies, municipal groups, and private citizens. In addition he participated in extension education efforts, conferences, and garden schools and hosted a local garden radio show. From 1934 to 1937, he held joint appointments with the Extension Service and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, first with the National Resources Board and then the Agricultural Adjustment Administration.
By 1940, Shoemaker's primary responsibility was the College Park campus, specifically the landscaping and master plan for capital construction, which President Harry Byrd supported. For the next 20 years, he held joint appointments with the Horticulture and Physical Plant departments and the Business Management Office of the Agricultural College as he participated in campus planning. When he retired in 1963, he held the title of landscape architect in the Horticulture Department.
For 60 years, Shoemaker was married to Mildred Woodward, and they had one daughter. They resided in the Bethesda-Chevy Chase area, where Shoemaker was involved in local politics and headed the Friendship Heights township administration after his retirement. Throughout his life, he was active in civic and horticultural organizations. He died January 5, 1983.
Scope and Contents of the Collection
The papers of Mark M. Shoemaker cover the years 1927 to 1971, with the bulk of the materials dating from 1927 to 1948. They include reports, correspondence, drafts of lectures, radio scripts, news clippings, maps and sketches, and photographs. All the materials relate to his professional work for the University and the federal agencies. The materials that predate his tenure with the University consist of selected papers of Professor A. S. Thurston of the Horticulture Department, who was in charge of the design and installation of landscaping at the University until 1932. Shoemaker inherited many of Professor Thurston's duties in later years.
Custodial History and Acquisition Information
Mark M. Shoemaker gave his papers to the University of Maryland Libraries in the 1970s. Richard White of the Department of Physical Plant donated an addition to the materials in 1982. Professor Conrad Link of the Horticulture Department donated another accretion in 1987.
Processed by Vicky H. Reinke, April 1988. Revised by Jill F. Reilly, April 2004.
Five series were created from the Shoemaker papers. Oversize drawings, maps, and blueprints were separated from the collection and stored in the Map Case. Reports bound by staples and metal clasps were removed from the original binding and placed in acid-free folders. All materials were removed from original folders or envelopes and placed in acid-free folders and boxes. All paperclips and staples were replaced by plastic clips. Clippings from newspapers and magazines were photocopied on acid-free paper and the originals then destroyed.
Photographs attached within the annual reports remain in those reports, separated by acid-free paper. All other photographic materials were moved to the photograph area. The photographs affixed to album pages were interleaved with acid-free paper. Loose photographs and slides were placed in non-reactive, polyester sleeves. Negatives and their corresponding prints were placed in non-reactive, acid-free pocket envelopes. Oversize photographs were stored in an archival flat box.
EAD markup created using EAD database in Microsoft Access. Markup completed by Jennie A. Levine.
Arrangement of Collection
The collection is organized as five series.
Detailed Description of the Collection
Series 1: Biographical Information, 1920-1963 (1.00 linear inch)
Series I includes a handwritten, three-page outline of his career that Shoemaker prepared after his retirement. It contains cryptic notes concerning various projects and his role in these ventures. The series also contains some music from his days at the University of Michigan.
The two folders are in alphabetical order.
|Description||Series||Box / Reel||Folder / Frame|
|[Chronology of extension career, 1930-1963], 1930-1936||series 1||box 1||folder 1|
|Music, undated||series 1||box 1||folder 2|
Series 2: Extension Service, 1931-1966 (1.25 linear feet)
Series II consists of materials generated in the course of Shoemaker's association with the Extension Service: reports of extension work, correspondence, project reports, project descriptions and drawings, maps, articles and lectures, radio scripts, publications, brochures of conferences and shows, and news clippings. Most of the material dates from 1931 to 1948.
Arrangement of the folders is alphabetical by topic; the arrangement within folders is chronological.
|Description||Series||Box / Reel||Folder / Frame|
|Annual Report -- Landscape Extension Work, 1943-1947||series 2||box 1||folder 3|
|Annual Report -- Landscape Extension Work, 1943-1947||series 2||box 2||folder 1|
|Annual Report -- Landscape Extension Work, 1943-1947||series 2||box 2||folder 2|
|Annual Report -- Landscape Extension Work, 1943-1947||series 2||box 2||folder 3|
|Annual Report -- Landscape Extension Work, 1943-1947||series 2||box 2||folder 4|
|Annual Report -- Landscape Extension Work, 1943-1947||series 2||box 2||folder 5|
|Annual Reports -- University of Maryland Extension Service, 1937-1934||series 2||box 2||folder 6|
|Conferences and courses, 1934-1936, 1944||series 2||box 2||folder 7|
|Correspondence, 1931-1952||series 2||box 2||folder 8|
|Extension keepsakes, 1932-1943||series 2||box 2||folder 9|
|Extension writings and project outlines [by Shoemaker], 1931-1940||series 2||box 2||folder 10|
|Horticulture Department Garden School, 1932, 1938, 1946-1948||series 2||box 2||folder 11|
|Land Use Mapping Project, 1938||series 2||box 2||folder 12|
|Land Use Project -- reports and maps, 1934||series 2||box 2||folder 13|
|Lectures and articles, 1932-1963||series 2||box 2||folder 14|
|Monthly reports -- Extension work, 1931||series 2||box 2||folder 15|
|National Council of State Garden Clubs -- Horticultural Project, 1939-1943||series 2||box 2||folder 16|
|clippings [College Park campus], 1956-1965||series 2||box 2||folder 17|
|Nurseryman Standards -- correspondence, 1936-1938||series 2||box 2||folder 18|
|Nurseryman Standards -- proposed, 1936||series 2||box 2||folder 19|
|Projects -- Cambridge, Maryland, City Park, 1934||series 2||box||folder 20|
|Projects -- Cedarville Forest (recreational area), 1936||series 2||box||folder 21|
|Projects -- Chestertown -- Queen Anne's Park, Needles Park, 1938||series 2||box||folder 22|
|Projects -- Gambrill, Route 40, Landscaping, 1940-1941||series 2||box||folder 23|
|Projects -- Gambrill's State Park, 1937||series 2||box||folder 24|
|Projects -- Governor Nice's Home Grounds, 1936||series 2||box||folder 25|
|Projects -- Governor's Mansion, Annapolis, 1937||series 2||box||folder 26|
|Projects -- Hagerstown, Pangborn Park, 1936-1938||series 2||box||folder 27|
|Projects -- Hagerstown Park, 1933-1934||series 2||box||folder 28|
|Projects -- Herrington Manor, undated||series 2||box||folder 29|
|Projects -- Matapeake (first job at University of Maryland), 1931||series 2||box||folder 30|
|Projects -- Montgomery County, undated||series 2||box||folder 31|
|Projects -- Nanjemoy, 1960||series 2||box||folder 32|
|Projects -- Rehoboth Cemetery, 1936||series 2||box||folder 33|
|Projects -- Rhode Island Ave. Improvement, 1934||series 2||box||folder 34|
|Projects -- St. Mary's Female Seminary, 1936||series 2||box||folder 35|
|Projects -- State House Grounds, Annapolis, 1932-1934||series 2||box||folder 36|
|Projects -- Symons Home Grounds, 1938||series 2||box||folder 37|
|Publication -- "Judging the Ornamental Garden", 1932||series 2||box||folder 38|
|Radio Show -- correspondence, 1934||series 2||box||folder 39|
|Radio Show -- programs, 1931-1948||series 2||box||folder 40|
|Records of Speeches, 1937||series 2||box||folder 41|
|Shows -- George Washington Bicentennial Garden Contest, 1931||series 2||box||folder 42|
|Shows -- National Flower and Garden Show, Baltimore, 1936||series 2||box||folder 43|
|Shows -- Outdoor Life Show -- Soil Conservation Exhibit, 1939||series 2||box||folder 44|
|Shows -- Winter Farm Products Show, 1939||series 2||box||folder 45|
|Shows -- Timonium Fair, 1941||series 2||box||folder 46|
|Soil Conservation Program -- Agricultural Adjustment Administration, 1936-1937||series 2||box||folder 47|
|University of Maryland College Park -- Commencement arrangements, 1950, 1962||series 2||box||folder 48|
|University of Maryland College Park -- DAR Memorial Grove, 1938||series 2||box||folder 49|
|University of Maryland College Park -- Entrance lamps, 1941||series 2||box||folder 50|
|University of Maryland College Park -- Old Rose Collection, 1937||series 2||box||folder 51|
|University of Maryland College Park -- Tree map, campus, 1937||series 2||box||folder 52|
|Wake Forest College -- correspondence, 1948||series 2||box||folder 53|
Series 3: National Resources Board, 1934-1935 (0.25 linear feet)
Series III includes correspondence and two reports relevant to Shoemaker's activities as a land-planning consultant to the Maryland National Resources Board from August 1934 to August 1935.
Arrangement of the folders is alphabetical by topic; the arrangement within the folders is chronological.
|Description||Series||Box / Reel||Folder / Frame|
|National Resources Board -- correspondence, 1934-1935||series 3||box||folder 54|
|National Resources Board -- Maryland Report: Closer Settlement of Rural Areas, 1935||series 3||box||folder 55|
|National Resources Board -- Maryland Report: Rural Land Use, 1935||series 3||box 4||folder 1|
Series 4: Papers of A. S. Thurston, 1927-1934 (0.25 linear feet)
Series V is a group of papers from the files of A. S. Thurston, who was in charge of landscaping of the campus until his retirement. The papers are primarily correspondence, sketches, and maps of the campus that date from 1927 to 1934. A notable item in the correspondence is a typescript copy of a letter and report from Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr., dated December 27, 1927.
Arrangement of the folders is alphabetical by topic; the arrangement within the folders is chronological or alphabetical by subject.
|Description||Series||Box / Reel||Folder / Frame|
|Data on Planting Campus (Thurston) and Correspondence, 1927-1929||series 4||box 4||folder 2|
|Plant Materials, Campus, 1928||series 4||box 4||folder 3|
|Thurston, Correspondence, 1927-1934||series 4||box 4||folder 4|
|Thurston, Correspondence, 1927-1934||series 4||box 4||folder 5|
|Thurston, Correspondence, 1927-1934||series 4||box 4||folder 6|
|Thurston, Correspondence, 1927-1934||series 4||box 4||folder 7|
Series 5: Photographs, 1926-1971 (5.75 linear feet and 6 oversize items)
Series IV consists of 637 photographs; 186 negatives; 1,397 slides; and 6 oversize photographs. An album contains 78 of the photographs. The photographic materials document landscaping projects that Shoemaker designed and supervised, from the construction and planting phases of the projects through their completion and mature growth. Many of the images depict the University of Maryland campus grounds and buildings, notably the Memorial Chapel, Byrd Stadium, and the garden at Rossborough Inn. Other landscaping projects include St. Mary's Seminary, schools on behalf of the Extension Service, and low-income housing developments.
Besides his professional landscaping work, the slides also reflect Shoemaker's personal life. Slides depict Shoemaker and his wife, family, friends, vacations, holiday celebrations, and his garden at home.
Arrangement reflects original order.
The box inventory for this series is not currently available online. Please refer to the series description above for a broad description of the materials or contact the department for more information.
Related MaterialIn addition to the two National Resources Board reports in Series III, the Maryland Room has another report that does not appear in the papers. The title page of the typescript report (HD.243.M345folio) reads, "Report on some desirable adjustment in rural land use for Maryland: an expansion and refinement of the preliminary report of September 1934. By Mark M. Shoemaker. College Park, Maryland, 1935."
For other related archival and manuscript collections, please see the following subject guides.
Selected Search Terms
This collection is indexed under the following headings in the University of Maryland Libraries' Catalog. Researchers desiring related materials about these topics, names, or places may search the Catalog using these headings.
- Landscape architects -- Maryland -- Archives.
- Shoemaker, Mark Mercer -- Archives
- University of Maryland, College Park. Dept. of Horticulture -- History -- Sources.
- University of Maryland, College Park -- History -- Sources.
Names (Added Entries)
- Thurston, Arthur S.