January 25, 1934

To maize geneticists :-

The inventory of genetic stocks which comprises the bulk of this letter is, of course, not complete but it will serve as a basis for future and more extensive lists. We wish to thank those maize geneticists who have cooperated in making this inventory possible. Its value should be apparent to everyone. In a plant such as maize where it takes several years to build up a required stock for a certain experiment, it is essential that the list of existing stocks be kept up to date and be available so that the investigator can make use of these stocks.

No attempt has been made to credit the stocks to different investigators. Those stocks which are marked with an asterisk are those which have not been received here at Cornell. It by no means follows that those stocks which are not marked by an asterisk were synthesized here at Ithaca. In the past we have received so many stocks from different cooperators that an attempt to trace the origin of the different stocks seemed a hopeless task. So we have purposely avoided listing the origin of any of the stocks. This does not give the credit due those investigators who have spent a great deal of time in building up good genetic strains. In the future we shall try to remedy this condition.

In order that this laboratory may serve efficiently as a distributing center for genetic strains, we urge those of you who have the stocks marked by an asterisk to send a small amount of seed to us so that it can be increased for distribution.

At the Boston meetings a system of nomenclature was agreed on by representatives of the Drosophila and maize groups. This proposed system, as it applies to maize, is submitted in this report for your consideration and your criticisms and suggestions are requested. It was agreed that the needs and requirements of maize and Drosophila genetics were so diverse that it would be unwise to attempt to formulate an identical system of nomenclature. Yet in the matter of symbolizing genes, designating translocations, deficiencies, etc., it was felt that a uniform system could be employed with advantage, and the symbols which are used in the proposed system were agreed upon by the representatives of the two groups.

It should be clearly understood that the proposed system is only tentative. It can and will be modified in any way that will make for a better and more useful system.