1. Natural history nerds, don’t miss a special lecture tomorrow night with Tom Baione, the Museum Library’s director and editor of Natural Histories: Extraordinary Rare Book Selections from the American Museum of Natural History Library. 
This is your chance to see some of the amazing scientific illustrations housed in our Rare Book Collection. Find out which books will be on display in this Q&A. 

    Natural history nerds, don’t miss a special lecture tomorrow night with Tom Baione, the Museum Library’s director and editor of Natural Histories: Extraordinary Rare Book Selections from the American Museum of Natural History Library

    This is your chance to see some of the amazing scientific illustrations housed in our Rare Book Collection. Find out which books will be on display in this Q&A

  2. After Charles Darwin published On the Origin of Species in 1859, he spent much of the next two decades conducting research into plant-breeding and other botanical topics, eventually publishing six books on topics ranging from orchids to insect-eating species to the habits of climbing plants.
Housed at the American Museum of Natural History, the Darwin Manuscripts Project will transcribe Darwin’s botanical manuscripts, making them available to all online. 

    After Charles Darwin published On the Origin of Species in 1859, he spent much of the next two decades conducting research into plant-breeding and other botanical topics, eventually publishing six books on topics ranging from orchids to insect-eating species to the habits of climbing plants.

    Housed at the American Museum of Natural History, the Darwin Manuscripts Project will transcribe Darwin’s botanical manuscripts, making them available to all online. 

  3. From the Archives: various species of fish from Renard’s Poissons, écrevisses et crabesIn an effort not to disappoint Europeans who saw collections of preserved tropical fish lacking their brilliant colors, Louis Renard (1678-1746) compiled the book Poissons, with fancifully colored engraved plates depicting fish and crustaceans from the Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia).Learn more.

    From the Archives: various species of fish from Renard’s Poissons, écrevisses et crabes

    In an effort not to disappoint Europeans who saw collections of preserved tropical fish lacking their brilliant colors, Louis Renard (1678-1746) compiled the book Poissons, with fancifully colored engraved plates depicting fish and crustaceans from the Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia).

    Learn more.

  4. The Passenger Pigeon (Ectopistes migratorius) was once so abundant that migrating flocks passing overhead could darken the sky for several days. One 19th-century account estimated more than 2.2 billion birds in a single flock; another calculated 136 million birds in a Wisconsin nesting area. In 1813, John James Audubon reported a migrating flock in Kentucky that passed undiminished for three days overhead: “the light of noon-day was obscured as by an eclipse.”
Yet in the second half of the 19th century, pressed by overhunting and deforestation, Passenger Pigeon populations began to decline. Within a few decades, they became scarce. The species disappeared altogether 100 years ago with the death of Martha,the last known Passenger Pigeon, who died in the Cincinnati Zoo on September 1, 1914.

Read the full story.

    The Passenger Pigeon (Ectopistes migratorius) was once so abundant that migrating flocks passing overhead could darken the sky for several days. One 19th-century account estimated more than 2.2 billion birds in a single flock; another calculated 136 million birds in a Wisconsin nesting area. In 1813, John James Audubon reported a migrating flock in Kentucky that passed undiminished for three days overhead: “the light of noon-day was obscured as by an eclipse.”

    Yet in the second half of the 19th century, pressed by overhunting and deforestation, Passenger Pigeon populations began to decline. Within a few decades, they became scarce. The species disappeared altogether 100 years ago with the death of Martha,the last known Passenger Pigeon, who died in the Cincinnati Zoo on September 1, 1914.

    Read the full story.

  5. A camel caravan was one of the ways Roy Chapman Andrews, who initiated a decade of Museum expeditions to Mongolia in the 1920s, and his team traveled through the Gobi Desert. His team discovered many dinosaur fossils, including the first nests of dinosaur eggs, some of which you can see on the Museum’s fourth floor.
Happy Valentine’s Day!

    A camel caravan was one of the ways Roy Chapman Andrews, who initiated a decade of Museum expeditions to Mongolia in the 1920s, and his team traveled through the Gobi Desert. His team discovered many dinosaur fossils, including the first nests of dinosaur eggs, some of which you can see on the Museum’s fourth floor.

    Happy Valentine’s Day!

  6. Happy Birthday, Charles Darwin!
The English naturalist was born February 12, 1809, and five decades later he published On the Origin of Species. Prompted by an article by Alfred Russel Wallace published in 1858, Darwin’s book introduced readers to an idea that would revolutionize human life as we understand it: the theory of evolution by natural selection.
Here are a few spots to learn more about Darwin’s life, scientific pursuits, and the continued influence of the theory of evolution by natural selection.

    Happy Birthday, Charles Darwin!

    The English naturalist was born February 12, 1809, and five decades later he published On the Origin of Species. Prompted by an article by Alfred Russel Wallace published in 1858, Darwin’s book introduced readers to an idea that would revolutionize human life as we understand it: the theory of evolution by natural selection.

    Here are a few spots to learn more about Darwin’s life, scientific pursuits, and the continued influence of the theory of evolution by natural selection.

  7. Happy Birthday, Barnum Brown!
Known as the greatest dinosaur collector of all time, Barnum Brown helped the American Museum of Natural History establish its world-class fossil collection. His extraordinary fossil-hunting career—which took him from a frontier farm to the world’s top fossil sites—included the discovery of the first complete skeleton of the Tyrannosaurus rex.
Fun fact: He was also the dinosaur consultant for Walt Disney and Leopold Stokowski’s Fantasia.
Learn more about Brown in a video.

    Happy Birthday, Barnum Brown!

    Known as the greatest dinosaur collector of all time, Barnum Brown helped the American Museum of Natural History establish its world-class fossil collection. His extraordinary fossil-hunting career—which took him from a frontier farm to the world’s top fossil sites—included the discovery of the first complete skeleton of the Tyrannosaurus rex.

    Fun fact: He was also the dinosaur consultant for Walt Disney and Leopold Stokowski’s Fantasia.

    Learn more about Brown in a video.

  8. Happy Birthday, Lewis Carroll!
Author Lewis Carroll was born 182 years ago today near Denton, England, the hat-making capital of that country. He was likely familiar with the phrase “mad as a hatter” when he created the abrupt and irrational Hatter character in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. 
Hat makers in the mid-1800s, when Carroll’s book was published, were often seen as irritable and peculiar. Sadly, many were suffering from mercury poisoning caused by the hat-making process. 
Learn more in The Power of Poison.

    Happy Birthday, Lewis Carroll!

    Author Lewis Carroll was born 182 years ago today near Denton, England, the hat-making capital of that country. He was likely familiar with the phrase “mad as a hatter” when he created the abrupt and irrational Hatter character in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

    Hat makers in the mid-1800s, when Carroll’s book was published, were often seen as irritable and peculiar. Sadly, many were suffering from mercury poisoning caused by the hat-making process. 

    Learn more in The Power of Poison.

  9. Happy Birthday, Roy Chapman Andrews!
Born 134 years ago today, Roy Chapman Andrews (left) is known for his globetrotting ways. Pictured here with Walter Granger on an expedition in Mongolia, Chapman was a zoologist and director of the Museum. He is also said to be the model for the movie icon Indiana Jones. 
Image: AMNH 

    Happy Birthday, Roy Chapman Andrews!

    Born 134 years ago today, Roy Chapman Andrews (left) is known for his globetrotting ways. Pictured here with Walter Granger on an expedition in Mongolia, Chapman was a zoologist and director of the Museum. He is also said to be the model for the movie icon Indiana Jones. 

    Image: AMNH 

  10. What killed Napoleon Bonaparte? Was he poisoned? This question has plagued historians since the defeated French emperor’s death on May 5, 1821.Read on.The Emperor Napoleon in his study at the Tuileries.Via Wikimedia Commons/National Gallery of Art

    What killed Napoleon Bonaparte? Was he poisoned? This question has plagued historians since the defeated French emperor’s death on May 5, 1821.

    Read on.

    The Emperor Napoleon in his study at the Tuileries.
    Via Wikimedia Commons/National Gallery of Art