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Guide to the Christine A. Heller papers
1895-1982

Collection number: HMC-0367.
Creator: Heller, Christine A.
Title: Christine A. Heller papers.
Dates: 1895-1982.
Volume of collection: 15.4 cubic feet. 
Language of materials: Collection materials are in English.
Collection summary: Papers of an Alaskan botanist and nutritionist.

Biographical note:
Christine Anderson Heller was born on March 27, 1907, in Utica, New York, and grew up in the House of the Good Shepherd, an Episcopalian children's home in Utica. She obtained a bachelor of science degree (1933), a master's degree (1937), and a doctorate in nutrition (with a minor in botany, 1952) from Cornell University. She was a nutritionist in New Mexico and also worked for the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Sacramento, California, and the California Health Department before moving to Juneau in 1945. She worked as a nutritionist in Alaska in various positions until her retirement in 1965. She also occasionally taught university courses in nutrition. Christine Heller maintained her interest in botany in Alaska. She wrote two works on botany in Alaska, Edible and Poisonous Plants of Alaska and Wild Flowers of Alaska (with Margaret E. Heller).

Collection description:
The collection consists primarily of materials relating to Christine Heller's professional work as a nutritionist and to her work in botany. It includes the data, notes, and drafts related to The Alaska Dietary Survey, 1956-1961 and the journal and photographs from the 1948 summer trip of the Coast Guard cutter Northwind to various villages in Alaska. There are also subject files on nutrition and food, and a large collection of recipes.

Arrangement: The collection is grouped into series: personal papers; academic course work and teaching; professional correspondence, publications and speeches; Alaska Dietary Survey records; nutrition and food-related materials; art and photographic materials; and other reference materials.

Alternative formats: Some photographic prints in the collection have had copy negatives made of them.

Digitized copies: Four images from the collection are available on the Alaska's Digital Archives (search Christine Heller). Digital copies of other collection material are not available online. For information about obtaining digital copies, please contact Archives and Special Collections.

Access restrictions: The collection contains original data sheets from the Alaska Dietary Survey and annotated copies of sections of the 1958 Bureau of Indian Affairs census. These are closed to research at this time. Please contact the Archives for more information regarding access to the Dietary Survey data sheets. Redacted copies of the 1958 census are available through the National Archives and through the Sealaska Heritage Institute.

Rights note: The Archives does not hold copyright to the materials in this collection.

Preferred citation: Christine A. Heller papers, Archives and Special Collections, Consortium Library, University of Alaska Anchorage.

Separated materials: In 2010, due to preservation concerns, Christine Heller's collected botanical specimens were removed from the collection and transferred to the University of Alaska's Museum of the North herbarium. Published items, including dietetic and botanical publications and cookbooks were transferred to the Consortium Library’s Rare Books collection in 2012.

Related materials:  Archives and Special Collections also holds the papers of Margaret Heller, Christine's sister. HMC-0398. A collection of Christine Heller's photographs is located at the Anchorage Museum at Rasmuson Center. As noted above, her botanical specimens are held by the University of Alaska Museum of the North.

Acquisition note: The collection was presented to the Archives by the estate of Margaret Heller in 1991.

Processing information: This collection was arranged and described by Michelle Wellck in the late 1990s. The guide was reformatted to current standards by Arlene Schmuland in 2012.

Series List:
Series 1: Personal records; 1938-1982.
Series 2: Academic coursework and teaching records; 1928-1956.
Series 3: Professional correspondence, publications and speeches; 1942-1974.
Series 4: Alaska Dietary Survey papers; 1955-1967.
Series 5: Nutrition and food-related work files; 1910-1973.
Series 6: Botany work files; undated, 1895-1975.
Series 7: Art and photographic materials; 1895-1970.
Series 8: Reference materials; undated, 1942-1970. 

Container list:
Series 1. Personal records; 1938-1982. 0.7 cubic feet.
This series includes membership records for various organizations and associations to which Christine Heller belonged; personal correspondence, a portion of which is correspondence with Alaska Natives who were making Native arts and craft items for purchase by Christine Heller; financial records, which includes bank statements, canceled checks, tax forms, and insurance records; and other personal records. The materials in this series are grouped by type of record.

Box/Folder

Description

Dates

1/1

Membership cards

1944-1974

1/2-3

American Dietetic Association records

1944-1974

1/4

American Home Economics Association records

1966-1974

1/5

Alaska Home Economics Association

1970, 1974

1/6

Herb Society of America

1954, 1966

1/7

Janet Alexander correspondence

1947-1948

1/8

Jimmie Killigivuk correspondence

1947-1953

1/9

Daisy Lane correspondence

1947-1953

1/10

Esther/Easter Lizzie Lane correspondence

1947-1949

1/11

Ruth Lee correspondence

1960, 1963, 1965

1/12

Pauline Tom correspondence

1966

1/13

Wilbur Walluk correspondence

1947-1949

1/14-16

Personal correspondence

1947-1975

1/17

Letterhead and address labels

undated

1/18

Alaska Crippled Children's Association greeting cards

undated

1/19

Bank statements, B.M. Behrends Bank

1946

1/20-25

Bank statements and canceled checks, Union Bank of Anchorage

1947-1949

1/26-27

Bank statements and canceled checks, National City Bank of Cleveland

1949-1950

1/28-29

Bank statements and canceled checks, First National Bank of Ithaca, New York

1950-1952

1/30

Bank statements and canceled checks, Union Bank of Anchorage

1952

1/31

Bank statements and canceled checks, Miners and Merchants Bank of Ketchikan

1952-1953

1/32-33

Bank statements and canceled checks, Union Bank of Anchorage

1953-1954

1/34

Check stubs

1947-1954

1/35

Insurance records

1938-1982

1/36

Pay stubs and statements of earnings

1949-1968

1/37

Tax records

1947-1954

1/38

Other financial records

1945-1980

1/39

Medical laboratory results

1945

Series 2: Academic coursework and teaching records; 1928-1956. 1.0 cubic feet.
This series consists of notes, handouts, and exams from courses taken and taught by Christine Heller. It was not possible to completely separate those courses in which she was a student from those courses she taught as she was both student and teacher at different points in her graduate school years. Most folder descriptions were taken from Christine Heller's file labels or notes. Arranged roughly in alphabetical order by course title or description.

Box/Folder

Description

Dates

1/40

Cornell transcript and grade report

1950, 1954

1/41

110b/Vit. D/Bone/Ca

1933-1934, 1947

1/42

120-Flavor

1928, 1936, 1954

1/43

184

1936, 1934, 1946

1/44

215-Advanced animal nutrition

1938-1939

1/45

Animal husbandry 215

1950

1/46

Biochemistry 102

1950

2/1

Biochemistry/nutrition 220

1951

2/2

Biochemistry

1949-1950?

2/3

Biochemistry

1951

2/4

Biology/physiology 361

1949

2/5

Biology/physiology 361/362

1949-1950

2/6

Foods and nutrition 234

1955

2/7

Home economics 1

1956

2/8

Home economics 1 and 3, course outlines

undated

2/9

Physiology 361

1949

2/10

Physiology 361/362J

1949-1950

2/11

Physiology 362/362J

undated

2/12

Physiology 362J

1950

2/13

Physiology

1949

2/14

Sociology/anthropology 690

1950?

2/15

Handouts from unknown course

1945

2/16

Notes from unknown courses

1951

2/17-19

Notes from courses

1945-1955

2/20

Notes regarding teaching a nutrition course?

undated


Series 3: Professional correspondence, publications and speeches; 1942-1974. 0.6 cubic feet.
This series is arranged into five groupings: professional correspondence; nutrition publications and drafts, botany publications, speeches and presentations, and publications mentioning or citing Christine Heller. Arranged by document type, generally chronologically within.

Box/Folder

Description

Dates

2/21-22

Professional correspondence

1947-1974

2/23-3/2

Nutrition drafts and publications

1942-1964

3/3

Botany publications

1953-1966

3/4-10

Speeches and presentations

undated

3/11-13

Publications citing Heller

1943-1973

Series 4: Alaska Dietary Survey papers; 1955-1967. 1.7 cubic feet.
This series consists of materials relating to the Alaska Dietary Survey of 1956-1961. The series includes drafts of portions of the report, compilations of data, daily food records, and reference materials. Access to portions of this collection is restricted as noted below: please consult archivists for more information.

Box/Folder

Description

Dates

3/14

Village nutrient intake report drafts

undated

3/15-16

Village nutrient intake tables

undated

3/17

Nutrient source data

undated, 1962

3/18

Village nutrient intake study—calcium intakes

undated, 1962

3/19

Village nutrient intake study—per capita intakes

undated, 1962

3/20

Village nutrient intake study—preschool children

undated, 1959-1962

3/21

Village nutrient intake study—preschool children—calcium intake

Unated, 1962

3/22-23

Village nutrient intake study—preschool diet

undated, 1962

4/1

Infant nutrient information

undated

4/2-3

Infant feeding practices, drafts and notes

undated, 1962

4/4

Infant feeding—table drafts

undated

4/5-12

“Infant feeding practices among Alaskan Eskimos and Indians” drafts and notes

undated, 1962-1963

4/13

"Infant Dietary Practices Among Alaskan Eskimos and Indians"-by Christine A. Heller-for presentation in the Symposium on Cultural Influence on Diet at the Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science

1963-1964

4/14

Map

undated

4/15

Store foods—yearly supply from invoices and inventory, Shishmaref, Newtok, and Hooper Bay

1956-1957

4/16-19

References

undated, 1958-1961

4/20-21

References

1953, 1955, 1961

4/22-5/34

[Closed to access: see restriction notes above] Alaska Dietary Survey daily food records

1956-1961

5/35-39

[Closed to access: see restriction notes above] Bureau of Indian Affairs census schedules, annotated

1958


 Series 5: Nutrition and food-related work files; 1910-1973. 9.25 cubic feet.
This series includes Christine Heller’s files relating to her nutrition and food-related work other than the Alaska Dietary Survey. Generally grouped by type of document or subject.

Box/Folder

Description

Dates

6/1-2

Journals

1948-1949

6/3

“Summary of trip aboard Coast Guard Cutter Northwind—June 6 to August 6, 1948”

Circa 1948

6/4

Application for federal employment

Circa 1953

6/5

“Nutrition lesson plans for Eskimo Mothers”

undated

6/6

Meat storage and spoilage notes

undated

6/7

Tularemia questionnaire, Arctic Health Research Center

1960

6/8

Recipes for Pioneer Home (?)

undated

6/9

Professional notes

undated

6/10

Notes from books and articles

undated

6/11-12

Native foods and food sources reports

undated, 1946, 1948

6/13

Food surveillance study

undated

6/14

Blank monthly record form of Native foods, store foods, and income

undated

6/15

List of foods from Chevak

undated

6/16

Hooper Bay notes

1966

6/17

Hooper Bay and Newtok food notes

1968

6/18

Kivalina notes

undated

6/19

Selawik notes

1966

6/20

Wainwright nutrition study proposal

undated

6/21

Wainwright notes

undated

6/22

Point Hope diet records

1971-1972

6/23

Protein and iodine references

undated

6/24

Appetite and food habits subject file

1943-1955

6/25

Artificial feeding, University of Utah subject file

1955-1956

6/26

Biotin subject file

1935-1952

6/27

Calcium subject file

1938-1956

6/28-29

Child development and nutrition subject files

1929-1952

6/30

Child guidance subject file

1929-1944

6/31

Color changes in food subject file

1951

6/32

Constipation and diarrhea subject file

1924-1947

7/1

Diabetes subject file

1935-1952

7/2

Diet and disease subject file

1942-1956

7/3-4

Diet and dietary diseases subject file

1920-1955

7/5

Dietherapy subject file

undated

7/6-8

Fats subject files

1935-1955

7/9

Fats and oils subject file

1941-1953

7/10

Fatty acids subject file

1954-1959

7/11

Food costs subject file

1946-1951

7/12

Food microbiology and food borne diseases subject file

1962-1966

7/13-14

Food preservation subject file

1924-1954

7/15

Geriatrics and nutrition/diet and disease/diet restriction subject file

1934-1948

7/16

History of nutrition subject file

1943-1953

7/17

Hormones subject file

1946, 1955

7/18

Infant feeding general/newborns subject file

1928-1956

7/19

Infant nutrition subject file

1928-1948

7/20-22

Iron subject file

1924-1951

8/1

Lactation and pregnancy subject file

1934-1947

8/2-4

Mineral metabolism subject file

1934-1954

8/5-6

Nutrition subject file

1939-1954

8/7

Nutrition surveys subject file

1945-1946

8/8-9

Poultry/protein subject file

1943-1952

8/10-12

Pregnancy subject file

1932-1950

8/13

Pregnancy/obesity subject file

undated

8/14-18

Protein subject file

1932-1954

8/19

Protein denaturization subject file

undated

8/20

Radiation references—Alaska Eskimos subject file

1956-1964

8/21

School children subject file

1937-1951

9/1

School nutrition

undated

9/2-4

Vitamins subject file

1935-1955

9/5

Vitamins in fish and fish products subject file

undated, 1962

9/6

Nutrition reference index cards

undated

9/7-12/15

Cooking and food subject files

1910-1968

15-19

Recipe cards

undated

12/16-23

Notecards from cookbooks

1959-1973

Series 6: Botany work files; undated, 1895-1975. 0.5 cubic feet.
This series consists of notes and publications most likely used in the development of Christine Heller’s Wild Flowers of Alaska.

Box/Folder

Description

Dates

12/24-26

Botany notes

undated, 1959

13/1

Lists of plants (referencing photographs?)

undated

13/2-4

Notes related to wildflower book

undated

13/5

Ideas regarding “Alaskan Notes”

undated

13/6

“Alaska plants collected near Fairbanks, 1950” list

1950

13/7

Flower drawings

undated

13/8

Pressed flower bookmark and card

undated

13/9-12

Botany reference works and notes

1895-1970

Series 7: Art and photographic materials; 1895-1970. 1.0 cubic feet.
This series includes some artwork, photographs, postcards, and a filmstrip. Materials are grouped by type.

Box/Folder

Description

Dates

13/13

Wilbur Walluk drawings (four)

undated

13/14-15

Portraits of Christine Heller

undated

13/16

Family photographs

undated

13/17

Unidentified images

undated

13/18

Dogs photographs

undated, 1963-1970

13/19

Children of friends and relatives photographs

undated, 1967

13/20

Alaska Dietary Survey related photographs

undated

13/21

Unidentified images (possibly from 1948 trip)

undated

13/22

Tunanak, Nelson Island photographs

undated

13/23-28

Unidentified villages and individuals photographs

undated, 1949-1961

13/29-33

Flower photographs

undated, 1954-1970

13/34

Fish filleting step-by-step photographs

undated

13/35

"Chilkat Chiefs in Dancing Costumes, Alaska"-Winter and Pond photograph

1895

13/36

Unidentified photographs

undated

13/37-38

Northwind trip photographs, including Christine Heller, Cmdr. Smeuton(?), Dr. Coenraad F.A. Moorrees [D.D.S. in Harvard group], Dr. Price [ship's doctor], Esther Schaubel [ANS field nurse], Mr. Grant [ship's photographer], Mr. Stockman [boatswain mate], Mr. Fredette, Lt. Russel, Mr. Crutcher, Snooze Jensen, Mr. Murray, Captain Thomas, Mr. Ottinger, Mrs. Kate Smith [ANS social worker], Mr. May [archaeologist in Harvard group], Mr. Ralph Calvert, Mrs. Edith Clark, Dr. Bill Braye, Mr. Scotto, the Northwind, the Northwind's landing craft, the Harvard Expeditionary Force [going to the Aleutians], Eskimos coming to the CGC for dental care, Eskimo families, Eskimo homes (exterior and interior), missionaries at Galovin, Kagamil Island, Mt. Carlisle, Nunivak Island, Cape Mendenhall, Mekoryuk, Nome, King Island, Teller, Teller Mission, Little Diomede, Big Diomede, Shismaref, Kotzebue, Point Hope, St. Paul Island, Nash Harbor, Gambel, St. Lawrence Island, Mt. Fairweather, plants, seals, seal pokes, barabaras, bird skins drying, and walrus meat drying.

1948

13/39

Alaska-Anchorage (38 postcards, 20 images)

undated

13/40

Alaska-Animals-Bears (59 postcards, 34 images)

undated

13/41

Alaska-Animals-Birds (55 postcards, 17 images)

undated

13/42

Alaska-Animals-Caribou/Reindeer (31 postcards, 16 images)

undated

13/43

Alaska-Animals-Goats (14 postcards, 7 images)

undated

13/44

Alaska-Animals-Moose (40 postcards, 18 images)

undated

13/45

Alaska-Animals-Sheep (33 postcards, 15 images)

undated

13/46

Alaska-Animals-Walrus/Seals/Sea Lions (20 postcards, 13 images)

undated

13/47

Alaska-Animals-Misc. Animals (37 postcards, 25 images)

undated

13/48

Alaska-Cabins (11 postcards, 7 images)

undated

13/49

Alaska-Cordova (5 postcards, 4 images)

undated

13/50

Alaska-Fairbanks (9 postcards, 9 images)

undated

13/51

Alaska-Flowers (38 postcards, 28 images)

undated

13/52

Alaska-Glaciers (44 postcards, 28 images)

undated

13/53

Alaska-Juneau (5 postcards, 3 images)

undated

13/54

Alaska-Mt. McKinley (49 postcards, 31 images)

undated

13/55

Alaska-Natives (mostly Eskimos) (125 postcards, 76 images)

undated

13/56

Alaska-Skagway (8 postcards, 7 images)

undated

13/57

Alaska-Totem Poles (35 postcards, 26 images)

undated

13/58

Alaska-Miscellaneous (91 postcards, 76 images)

undated

14/1

Animals (Non-Alaskan) (21 postcards, 19 images)

undated

14/2

Arizona (49 postcards, 44 images)

undated

14/3

Birds (Non-Alaskan) (12 postcards, 10 images)

undated

14/4

California (5 postcards, 5 images)

undated

14/5

Canada (9 postcards, 8 images)

undated

14/6

Connecticut (8 postcards, 8 images)

undated

14/7

Flowers (Non-Alaskan) (30 postcards, 28 images)

undated

14/8

Massachusetts (42 postcards, 36 images)

undated

14/9

Miscellaneous countries (14 postcards, 14 images), includes correspondence

undated

14/10

Montana (8 postcards, 7 images)

undated

14/11

New Jersey (12 postcards, 10 images)

undated

14/12

New Mexico (29 postcards, 28 images)

undated

14/13

New York (145 postcards, 134 images)

undated

14/14

New Zealand (6 postcards, 6 images)

undated

14/15

Oregon (14 postcards, 11 images)

undated

14/16

Paintings (23 postcards, 17 images)

undated

14/17

Vermont (19 postcards, 16 images)

undated

14/18

Washington (5 postcards, 5 images)

undated

14/19

Wyoming (30 postcards, 30 images)

undated

14/20

Unsorted (26 postcards, 26 images), includes correspondence

undated, 1948

14/21

Postcards sent to Miss Christine A. McDonald, Utica, NY(9 postcards, 9 images), includes correspondence

1907, 1909

20

“How to package frozen foods” filmstrip by National agricultural Supply Co.

undated

Series 8: Reference materials; undated, 1942-1970. 0.65 cubic feet.
This series includes includes some notes and publications on Alaskan food and Eskimos; and index cards which include references related to medicinal uses of herbs, Alaskan edible plants, ascorbic acid analysis, and other references.

Box/Folder

Description

Dates

14/22-26

General reference notes

1942-1970

20

Index note cards including Alaska edible/useful plants, ascorbic acid analysis, and medicinal herbs

undated