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Alaska Moose (Diorama)


Historical Note

The Alaska Moose diorama, located on the first floor of the American Museum of Natural History in the Bernard Family Hall of North American Mammals, was completed in 1940 and restored during the Hall’s restoration of 2011-2012. The scene depicts two fighting Alaska moose battling one another over a female during the autumn mating season on the Kenai Peninsula, Alaska. The bog scene is typical of vast areas within the boreal forest. Stunted black spruce are depicted in the foreground. In the background, aspen trees are portrayed in fall color and indicate areas where fire has occurred. The background painter was Carl Rungius; The foreground artist was G. Frederick Mason (with James Carmel assisting); the taxidermist was Robert Rockwell.

Alaska Moose creators: Foreground artist George Frederick Mason with James Carmel; taxidermy by Robert Rockwell (c 1940).

The exhibition hall opened in 1942 as the new Hall of North American Mammals. Ten dioramas were completed initially; work on the hall halted during World War II; final completion 1954. All exhibition work completed under the direction of James L. Clark and Albert E. Butler.