Special Collections Department
403 Parks Library
Iowa State University
Ames, IA 50011-2140

MS 349
American Statistical Association
Records, 1839-[ongoing]

Descriptive summary

creator: American Statistical Association
title: Records
dates: 1839-[ongoing]
extent: 101.28 linear feet (204 document boxes, 11 records center cartons, 1 oversize box)
collection number: MS 349
repository: Special Collections Department, Iowa State University.


Administrative information

access: Open for research
publication rights: Copyright retained by the American Statistical Association. Please contact ASA Committees Coordinator for permission or more information.
preferred citation: American Statistical Association Records, MS 349, Special Collections Department, Iowa State University Library.


Historical note

The American Statistical Association is a professional society interested in the theory, methodology, and application of statistics to all fields of human endeavor. It was founded in 1839 in Boston, Massachusetts. Originally called the American Statistical Society, it changed its name to its present form in 1840, and a constitution and charter were in place by 1841. Beginning as a regional organization, the ASA had become a national organization by 1914. In 1934, it moved its headquarters to Washington, D.C. During the last half century the ASA has increased its membership base and the number of publications it produces. By 1990, its membership had reached 15,000 and it published nine journals. Its current headquarters are in Alexandria, Virginia. For a fuller history of the American Statistical Association, see R. L. Mason, J. D. McKenzie, Jr., and S. J. Ruberg, "A Brief History of the American Statistical Association, 1839-1989," the American Statistician, Vol. 44, No. 2 (May 1990): 68-73.

Additional information on the American Statistical Association can be found through the organization's website: http://www.amstat.org/


Collection description

The American Statistical Association records do not uniformly document the organization's history. Though there are some nineteenth-century records, there are also many gaps in the early documentation. The collection is most complete for recent decades, particularly the 1980s. It includes correspondence, committee files, financial records, publications, indexes to journals, conference proceedings, news clippings, and research proposals. It also includes a copy of the American Statistical Association's original charter and constitution. The collection contains some records dealing with the International Statistical Institute, IRIS Programs in Africa, CIRIS Programs in Africa and Asia, the Latin American Program (LAP), the Committee of Presidents of Statistical Societies (COPSS), and contains early organizational materials and information on the Institute of Mathematical Statistics. There are records for several sections within ASA, most notably the Biopharmaceutical Section, circa 1970-79.

The American Statistical Association records were donated to the Iowa State University Library in 1984. The collection is part of the ISU Library's Statistical Archive, which documents the history of statistics in the United States. A guide to the collections in the Statistical Archive, including the personal papers of several past ASA presidents and some of the records of ASA journals, is available online in the Subject Guides section of the Special Collections Department website.

The collection was processed in 1996 with the financial assistance of the American Statistical Association.


Related materials

Publications, including journals, of the American Statistical Association can be found through the library's search system: http://www.lib.iastate.edu

A listing of other statistics related collections can be found online: http://findingaids.lib.iastate.edu/spcl/collections/statistics.html



The collection is listed chronologically.

The full finding aid is available online: