June 4, 2012
After Andrea’s graduation, we visit the Field Museum of Natural History, located in Chicago. It sits on the the shores of Lake Michigan. The museum’s collection spans over 21 million specimens of fossils and ancient Native American artifacts, but only a portion of these are on display at any given time.
The animal exhibits are amongst the most popular the museum has to offer. These exhibits give visitors an up-close look at the diverse habitats that animals inhabit. The taxidermy collection of African animals includes the infamous Lions of Tsavo which was featured in the 1996 movie “The Ghost and the Darkness”.
The Grainger Hall of Gems and its large collection of diamonds and gems from around the world, also includes a Louis Comfort Tiffany stained glass window. Part of this exhibit, called the Hall of Jades focuses on Chinese jade artifacts spanning 8,000 years.
The Ancient Egypt exhibit offers a glimpse into what life was like for ancient Egyptians. Twenty-three human mummies are on display as well as many mummified animals. The exhibit features a tomb that visitors can enter, complete with 5,000-year-old hieroglyphs. There are also many interactive displays, for both children and adults.
The Evolving Planet exhibit follows the history and the evolution of life on Earth over 4 billion years, from the first organism to present-day life. Visitors can see how mass extinctions in Earth’s history helped shape all the organisms. There is also an expanded dinosaur hall, with dinosaurs from every era, as well as interactive displays.
The Ancient Americas exhibit displays 13,000 years of human ingenuity and achievement in the Western Hemisphere, where hundreds of diverse societies thrived long before the arrival of Europeans. In this large permanent exhibition visitors can learn the epic story of the peopling of these continents, from the Arctic to the tip of South America. We were lucky on the day that we visited to get an inside look at one of the famous Native American earth lodges. There were fascinating displays of authentic Native American headdresses and costumes for both men and women.
Our visit to the field museum in Chicago has come to an end but we take away a lot of new learning about our planet and its peoples.