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The Cornell Plant Pathology Herbarium contains several thousand accessions that were collected in China and transported to Cornell to prevent their destruction in WWII. The collection is largely the legacy of former Cornell College of Agriculture graduate student Shu-Chun Teng. When he left Cornell, Teng traveled across China on horseback in the late 1920s and 1930s, collecting and cataloging some 2,000 specimens, which he sent to Cornell for safekeeping after the Japanese invaded China and overtook Peking and Nanking in 1937.
On April 13, 2009, a delegation of Chinese government officials, led by State Councilor Liu Yandong, visited campus to begin the process of repatriating the fungi to China.
At a ceremony in Weill Hall, President David Skorton presented Liu with a letter of intent explaining Cornell's lengthy efforts to return the fungi.