Guide to the Beatrice Sweeney Papers

Laurie Hannah
Cheadle Center for Biodiversity and Ecological Restoration
University of California, Santa Barbara
Harder South 9615
Santa Barbara, California 93106-9615
Phone: (805) 893-2401
Fax: (805) 893-4222
© 2008
The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Guide to the Beatrice Sweeney Papers

Collection number: MS-12

Cheadle Center for Biodiversity and Ecological Restoration

University of California, Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara, California
Processed by:
Laurie Hannah
Date Completed:
Encoded by:
Laurie Hannah
© 2008 The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: Beatrice Sweeney papers
Dates: 1971-1978
Collection number: MS-12
Creator: Sweeney, Beatrice M.
Collection Size: .5 linear foot
Repository: Cheadle Center for Biodiversity and Ecological Restoration (University of California, Santa Barbara). C. H. Muller Library
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-9615
Abstract: Outgoing academic and professional correspondence, including reviews, of Beatrice Sweeney, Professor of Biology, written from 1971-1978.
Languages: Languages represented in the collection: English


Collection is open for research.

Publication Rights

Copyright has not been assigned to the Cheadle Center for Biodiversity and Ecological Restoration, UC Santa Barbara. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Director. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Cheadle Center as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the reader.

Preferred Citation

Beatrice Sweeney papers, MS-12, Cheadle Center for Biodiversity and Ecological Restoration. University of California, Santa Barbara.

Acquisition Information

Materials transferred from Dept. of Biological Sciences.

Processing Information

Arrangement and description of this collection was funded by a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

Biography / Administrative History

Beatrice M. Sweeney was a plant physiologist by training who specialized in circadian rhythms, or biological clocks, in marine organisms. She was a professor of biology at UCSB from 1969 until her death in 1989. Her area of expertise was unicellular organisms and she spent a number of years trying to discover the mechanism that caused bioluminescence in the genus Gonyaulax, a kind of plankton. She published a short book on the subject of rhythmicity called Rhythmic Phenomena in Plants in 1969.
At UCSB she was also assistant provost of the College of Creative Studies and she taught several popular courses. Having raised four children while conducting research and teaching, she appreciated opportunities she received for employment and advancement but was also familiar with the struggles in the still male-dominated academic world of the 1970s. She was named Chair of the UCSB Committee on the Status of Women which looked at policy issues on campus, such as the disparity in funding men's and women's athletics. Sweeney passed away in unexpectedly 1989 at the age of 75 while still actively pursuing her research.

Scope and Content of Collection

This collection consists of one series of professional correspondence, written during the years 1971-1978 when Sweeney was professor of biology at UCSB. The letters (copies of her outgoing correspondence) fall into about four categories: letters of recommendation; responses to invitations to write reviews, attend conferences, and fulfill other academic requests; discussions of current research with colleagues; and reviews of articles and NSF proposals. Many graduate students wrote to her about coming to UCSB and working with her, attesting to her popularity as a graduate adviser. Several letters reflect her interest and work in creating equal opportunities for women at University of California and at UCSB in particular.


This collection consists of one series: Correspondence. Arrangement is chronological.

Indexing Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
Circadian rhythms
Marine biology
Marine plankton
University of California, Santa Barbara. Dept. of Biological Sciences
Sweeney, Beatrice M.

Related Material

See UCSB Davidson Library Special Collections (FACP 25). Collection includes biographical information, photographs, research notebooks and files, speeches, and writings.


Correspondence 1971-1978

Folder 1

Correspondence 1971

Folder 2

Correspondence 1972

Folder 3

Correspondence 1973

Folder 4

Correspondence 1974

Folder 5

Correspondence 1975

Folder 6

Correspondence 1976

Folder 7

Correspondence 1977

Folder 8

Correspondence 1978