Carl Ethan Akeley (born May 19, 1864, Clarendon, New York— died November
17, 1926, Belgian Congo, Africa), taxidermist, sculptor, inventor, explorer, and
naturalist, who led five expeditions to Africa, three of which for the Museum of
Natural History where he gathered specimens for his African Hall Exhibition. He
is the author of the book In Brightest Africa.
Delia Julia Denning (born December 5, 1875 Beaver Dam, Wisconsin – died
May 22, 1970, Daytona Beach, Florida), explorer, big game hunter, naturalist,
and author, who went on four expeditions to Africa, both with former husband
Carl Ethan Akeley for the American Museum of Natural History as well as solo for
the Brooklyn Museum . She is the author of numerous magazine articles as well as
the books J.T., j.r.: the biography of the African monkey (1929) and Jungle
Mary L. Jobe (Mary Lenore Jobe) Akeley (born January 29, 1878, Tappan,
Ohio— died July 19, 1966, Mystic, Connecticut), explorer, photographer,
lecturer, writer, who went on numerous expeditions to the Canadian Rockies
before marrying Carl Ethan Akeley, participating in his Akeley-Eastman-Pomeroy
African Hall expedition and being named Special Advisor and Assistant of the
African Hall for the Museum of Natural History, after his death in 1926. She is
the author of many publications, including Carl Akeley’s Africa, Restless
Jungle, and Congo Eden.
Roy Chapman Andrews was an explorer, paleontologist, and a well-known figure at the American Museum of Natural History. Born in Beloit, Wisconsin on January 26, 1884 to Cora Chapman and Charles Ezra Andrews, he enjoyed hunting and the study of nature. He taught himself taxidermy and, being the only taxidermist in the Beloit area, provided preparation and mounting services for local hunters. (1) After graduating from Beloit College in 1906 with a B.A., Andrews sought a career at AMNH, but there were no positions available. He volunteered to work at the museum as a janitor and assistant to James L. Clark and was hired July 16, 1906. His taxidermy skills were quickly recognized and by 1908 he was able to convince the AMNH director, H.C. Bumpus to allow him to collect specimens in the field. (2)
Harold Elmer Anthony (born April 5, 1890, died March 29, 1970) was a mammalogist and worked at the American Museum of Natural History for over 50 years. He specialized in mammals of the Western Hemisphere and led many expeditions to South and Central America. Anthony was the Chairman and Curator in the Department of Mammalogy and was the Dean of Scientific Staff for several years. The Museum's mammal halls were created under his leadership: Hall of North American Mammals, Akeley Hall of African Mammals and Hall of South Asiatic Mammals. He wrote "Field Book of North American Mammals" (1928) and "Mammals of Porto Rico, Living and Extinct" (1925, 1926, in two volumes).
James Wade Atz was born on July 23rd, 1915 in Newark, New Jersey. He
received his B.A. from Cornell University in 1936 and both his M.S. in 1951 and
his Ph.D. in 1959 from New York University. Dr. Atz began his career studying
fish at the New York Aquarium first as a lab technician in 1937, then as
assistant curator in 1947, associate curator in 1957, and finally as a full
curator in 1961. He joined the American Museum of Natural History with an
honorary position as a research associate in the Department of Animal Behavior
in 1960. In 1965 he moved to the Department of Ichthyology where he became an
associate curator and then a full curator in 1970.
Charles Marcus Breder (1897-1983) was an ichthyologist who held curatorial and directorial positions at the New York Aquarium and the American Museum of Natural History, including the Museum’s Lerner Marine Laboratory. His repute rests in part on work in fish behavior, including locomotion, and prodigious writing. Throughout his career he undertook fieldwork within the Americas. Breder died at age eighty-six on October 28, 1983, in Englewood Hospital, Florida.
James Paul Chapin (1889-1964) was a noted Ornithologist and former Curator
at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. At the age of 19 he
took the role of assistant to the American Museum Congo Expedition (1909-1915).
This began his life-long association with that region and established his place
as an expert on the birds of the Congo. A graduate of Columbia University,
Chapin worked at the Museum from 1905 until his official retirement in 1948,
after which he took the role of research associate in African Ornithology and
curator emeritus until his death.
James Lippitt Clark (1883 – 1969) was an accomplished animal sculptor,
taxidermist, explorer and big-game hunter. Clark was employed by the American
Museum of Natural History from 1902 to 1908, and again from 1923 to 1949, and
served as the museum’s Director of Arts, Preparation and Installation from 1935
until his retirement. Clark is known for his innovations in specimen preparation
and display, his creative direction of the museum’s mammal halls, and for his
role in several expeditions on behalf of the museum, both within North America
and to remote regions of Africa, Central Asia and Southeast Asia.
George Clyde Fisher, known as Clyde, was a scientist and educator who
worked for the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) from 1913 until his
retirement in 1941. He worked in the Department of Education before his
involvement in the development of the Astronomy department. He was instrumental
in the planning and execution of the Hayden Planetarium, and acted as its first
curator when it opened in 1935.
Artist Louis Agassiz Fuertes (February 1874-August 1927), celebrated for his bird
portraiture, helped to create many dioramas for the American Museum of Natural History in the
early 1900s. In addition to artwork and exploration for natural history and scientific
institutions, he illustrated popular books and magazines and worked for manufacturing and
travel industries. He lived in Ithaca, New York, most of his life and participated in the
American Ornithologists’ Union.
Edmund Otis Hovey (born September 15, 1862, New Haven, Connecticut,
U.S.—died September 27, 1924, New York, New York, U.S.), geologist and curator
at the American Museum of Natural History, known for his studies of the volcanic
eruptions of Mount Pelée, Martinique and La Soufrière, Saint Vincent.
Libbie Henrietta Hyman (born December 6, 1888, Fort Dodge, Iowa, in 1888 —
died August 3, 1969, New York, New York), scientist, zoologist, author, who
researched and published numerous writings on invertebrates. She became
affiliated with the American Museum of Natural History in 1933, when she
accepted a position as a research associate in the Department of Experimental
Biology. In 1943, she was named research associate in the Department of
Invertebrates. She is the author of numerous publications, including: A
Laboratory Manual for Elementary Zoology, A Laboratory Manual for Comparative
Vertebrate Anatomy, six volumes of The Invertebrates.
Herbert Lang (1879-1957) was a German-born taxidermist, mammalogist, naturalist and photographer. He was originally employed by the American Museum of Natural History in 1903 as taxidermist in the presentations department, and worked for that institution for almost twenty-three years. He is best known as the leader and photographer of the 1909-1915 American Museum Congo Expedition. He later acted as a Curator in the Department of Mammalogy, and would continue to participate in research expeditions. Although he maintained association with the American Museum of Natural History, he moved to South Africa in 1925 and began a working relationship with the Transvaal Museum. He is well-respected for his wildlife and ethnographic photographs.
Henry Cushier Raven, (born April 16, 1889, Brooklyn, New York, U.S. --
died April 4, 1944), was an expert scientific illustrator, taxidermist, and
collector of essential expedition specimens for several of the top natural
history institutions in the United States, including Columbia University,
Cornell University, Colorado Museum of Natural History, the Smithsonian
Institution, and the American Museum of Natural History. His research and
species data collecting brought him all over the world, resulting in the
acquisition of hundreds of physical specimens (resulting in many dissection
illustrations) as well as copious photographic and moving-picture evidence of
their natural movement and habitats.
Chester A. Reeds (born July 20 1882 - died October 4, 1968), curator of
the Department of Geology and Invertebrate Paleontology and publication editor,
who served on the American Museum of Natural History publication committee and
oversaw the September-October 1926 issue of Natural History, entitled The
Romance of Fossil Hunting.
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