Wade Swann Neely

(28 November 1892 –  18 August 1940)

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Herbarium has cataloged to date a handful of vascular plant specimens collected by Wade Swann Neely, who usually signed his specimen labels as simply “Neely” or “W. S. Neely”. He commonly collected with professors William Chambers Coker and H. R. Totten as well as with classmate Norman Anderson Reasoner.

Neely collected over 200 fungal specimens from Orange County, North Carolina and again his most common co-collectors were William Chambers Coker, H. R. Totten and Norman Anderson Reasoner.  While Neely’s earliest fungal collections date from 1915 the vast majority date from the summer of 1917. The macrofungi in NCU’s holdings, including those collected by Mr. Neely, are cataloged as part of the Macrofungal Collection Consortium project.

It appears that NCU is the only herbarium curating specimens collected by Wade Swann Neely.


Wade Swann Neely was the eldest of seven sons born to Mary “Mamie” (McKnight) (1869-1960) and Samuel Milton Neely (1869-1945).  He was a student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, but joined the United States Army in 1917 before earning a degree  and instead became a career soldier. His brother, Guy L. Neely graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1920.

Wade Neely “was connected with the divisional headquarters of the 81st Division.  After serving overseas with this division until the Armistice, he was transferred to the army of occupation at Coblenz, Germany, where he served as Secretary to General Johnson.”1  Neely married German national Eleanor Bertram (1896-1971) on 23 May 1922. 2

They returned to the United States in 1923, and Neely was stationed at Fort Screvens, Georgia until 1936, then transferred to Honolulu, Hawaii.  At the time of his death, at age 47, he had attained the rank of Master Sergeant.  He died in Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, and is buried in Pleasant Hill Presbyterian Church cemetery in Charlotte, Mecklenburg County, North Carolina.2

none known


1.      Neely, Wade Swan.  University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Alumni Records.

2.      Find a Grave Memorial ##91650608.