Statement of Joseph Henry, first Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, in reference to Lorin Blodget, Assistant in charge of Meteorology, mid-February 1855. In the statement, Henry discusses Bloget's time spent working for the Smithsonian's meteorology department. He details the rise in his salary as his work improved, and the beginning of undesirable circumstances surrounding his employment at the Smithsonian. Henry discusses the collection of materials by Blodget, and his taking credit for work done under the Smithsonian name. He then details the reason for the dismissal of Blodget from his position, due in part to his refusal to follow directions, but as a sum of a number of things.
Acting under legal counsel, Joseph Henry discharged Lorin Blodget on October 11, 1854, by locking him out of his office. Blodget had been hired in December 1851 to reduce the meteorological data collected by the Smithsonian and to conduct the institution's correspondence with its volunteer weather observers. At the 1853 meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Blodget had presented three papers that, in Henry's opinion, failed to give the Smithsonian due credit for providing the data Blodget had analyzed. When informed of his dismissal, Blodget refused to turn over a list of the Smithsonian's meteorological observers and his record of correspondence with them. Blodget would go on to publish a meteorological report for the Surgeon General's Office of the Army containing data for which, Henry insisted, the Smithsonian and its observers should have be credited.