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Sunday, October 31, 2010

Phantoms of the Museum

Happy Halloween! Make sure you check out Pam Henson's post "Phantoms of the Museum" originally published at the National Museum of Natural History blog.

"As Halloween approaches, I am reminded of a May 13, 1900, article (see the scan at the bottom of this post) on the National Museum in the Washington Post that reported on “Shades of Scientists Who Walk There Nightly,” (shades was an old term for ghosts). The U.S. National Museum was then housed in what is now known as the Arts and Industries Building. The guards and staff who worked late reported that the deceased but devoted scientists of earlier eras continued to walk the halls of the Museum at night, guarding over their collections. Foremost among these was Spencer Fullerton Baird (1823-1887), the first Smithsonian curator and second Secretary of the Smithsonian."

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