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Jack McCormick papers

Identifier: L095

Scope and Contents

This collection includes indexes, histories, photographs, pamphlets, maps and correspondence from Jack McCormick and the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (formerly Indiana Department of Conservation) in Indiana ranging from 1883 to 1970 regarding Shades State Park, Pine Hills Nature Preserve, and other Indiana state parks.

The oversize maps of the Alamo Quadrangle, Pine Hills, and Shades State Park and its surroundings range in dates from 1939 to 1950, though many are undated (OBC127).


  • 1820-circa 1964


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Legal title, copyright, and literary rights reside with Rare Books and Manuscripts, Indiana State Library, Indianapolis, IN. All requests to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted to Rare Books and Manuscripts.

Biographical Note

Jack Sovern McCormick was born to James Albert and Betty V. (Sovern-Smith) McCormick in Indianapolis, Indiana on January 19, 1929. He served as resident naturalist at Shades and Turkey Run state parks in Indiana from 1949 to 1951 and received his B.S. in Botany from Butler University, Indianapolis in 1951. He married Gwendolyn Adele Terry on September 21, 1951 in Marion County, Indiana and they had two children" James Russell and Wendy Lynn.

McCormick received a Ph.D. in Botany from Rutgers University in New Jersey in 1955. He was involved in the creation of the Pine Hills Nature Preserve (now part of Shades State Park) from 1955 to 1961. His father, James McCormick was an attorney who provided legal aid in the acquisition of Pine Hills. McCormick worked at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, New York from 1955 through 1961. In 1958 he worked briefly at the Southwestern Research Station of the American Museum of Natural History in Portal, Arizona.

He was an assistant professor of botany at the Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio from 1961 to 1963 and also worked at the Kalbfleisch Field Research Station in 1961. McCormick became a curator and chairman of the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1963. He was also a member of the Nature Conservancy and authored three books. McCormick died in February, 1979.


Items in the collection. "Jack Sovern McCormick." U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007. Accessed December 12, 2015. "Gwendolyn Terry." Marion County, Indiana, Marriage Index, 1925-2012. Accessed December 12, 2015.

Thompson, Donald Eugene, Richard Elwell Banta, and Wabash College. "McCormick, Jack Sovern." Indiana Authors and Their Books, 1917-1966. Crawfordsville, IN: Wabash College, 1974.

Historical Note

Shades State Park is located about 17 miles southwest of Crawfordsville, Indiana (off S.R. 47) and offers opportunities for hikers and canoeists. The beautiful sandstone cliffs overlooking Sugar Creek and numerous shady ravines provide the backdrop for a journey through this nature lover's paradise. The park was established in 1947.

Also on the property is Pine Hills Nature Preserve, which was annexed to the park in 1961, affords spectacular topography along a fairly long hike. The Nature Conservancy's Indiana chapter in Montgomery County, Indiana sought to purchase the property and donate it to the State of Indiana to preserve the area's natural beauty.


Items in the collection.

Indiana Department of Natural Resources. Division of State Parks. "Shades State Park." Accessed December 12, 2015.


1.54 Cubic Feet (4 manuscript boxes, 4 large oversize folders)

Language of Materials



This collection is arranged in the following series:

Series 1: State Parks documents, 1883-1970

Series 2: State Parks oversize documents, 1948; undated

Custodial History

This collection was received by Rare Books and Manuscripts as a donation from Jack McCormick on 1969/08/27 and 1970/08/23.


No further additions are expected.

Processing Information

Collection processing completed 2016/01/22 by Edythe Huffman. EAD finding aid created 2016/01/22 by Edythe Huffman. EAD finding aid revised 2020/08/05; 2024/05/22 by Brittany Kropf; 2021/10/26 by Lauren Patton.
Jack McCormick papers
Under Revision
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Rare Books and Manuscripts Repository

140 North Senate Avenue
Indianapolis, Indiana 46204 U.S.A.