Inside the Secret Collections Backstage at the US Museum of Natural History

By

22nd Mar, 2016

Birds Collections, National Museum of Natural History

If I had the choice, I would always choose to visit a museum inside out– that is, take a backstage tour of what they don’t display, which in most cases, is much larger than what is actually on display. And we’re not talking about 2 to 3 times larger, we’re talking about secret collections that are 99. 9% larger, hiding behind the museum walls…

Entomology Collections, National Museum of Natural History

To give you an idea of how much we’re missing, The Smithsonian team at the National Museum of Natural History has kindly shared their staff photos, giving us a glimpse of what it would be like to raid all those backstage drawers and cabinets. You could say that museums sure do like to hoard things, but of course, it’s not all just sitting there gathering dust. The NMNH’s collections are special resources that allow the museum to make unique contributions to answering significant scientific questions and play a vital role in advancing scientific knowledge, addressing societal issues, and increasing scientific literacy.

Anthropology Collections, Smithsonian Institution's Museum Support Center

Anthropology

Invertebrate Zoology Collections, National Museum of Natural History

Invertebrate Zoology

The Mineral Sciences' "Blue Room," National Museum of Natural History

Mineral Sciences

Botany Collections, Natural History Building

Botany

Pod 4 (Oversize Storage) at the Smithsonian's Museum Support Center (MSC)

Anthropology

Paleobiology Collections, National Museum of Natural History

Paleobiology

Fish Collections in Alcohol, National Museum of Natural History

Fishes

Mouse Collections, National Museum of Natural History

Mammals

Botany Algae Collection, National Museum of Natural History

Botany – Algae

Whale Skeletons, Museum Support Center

Mammals – Whale

All these fabulous photos are by the late Chip Clark, found on the Smithsonian Collections

You might also like

Comments

More in Conversation StartersDon't Be A TouristEditor's PicksHow to start a subcultureLife is MessyOff-Beat & Little Known

Hot Off the Press

Editor's Picks

paristrains

Last Train to Paris

Take the most romantic city in the world and the most romantic way to travel, put the two together and you've got my attention. Paris was the original starting point for the legendary Orient Expres...

Trending 992
102657544_Johnniac_user_console_0009-4-as-Smart-Object-1-copy-550x550

Antique Computer Nostalgia

At the rate computer technology is advancing, photographer Mark Richards' collection of computers are indeed historical. These machines are officially antiques. As someone that enjoys pressing but...

Trending 920
Bohemian_Grove_Camp_-_Garnett,_Sterling,_London

Bohemian Grove: The Secret Society Summer Camp

I just spent the morning finding out everything I can on the Bohemian Grove. For two weeks every summer, the 2,700 acre secured private camp in the Ancient Redwood Forest of Northern California, pl...

Trending 2,212
playboypink

13 Things I Found on the Internet Today (Vol. CXC)

1. The socialite buried wearing a lace nightgown inside her 1964 Ferrari Sandra West was a Beverly Hills socialite and wife of Texas oil tycoon Ike West. When she made her will, she requested th...

Trending 3,623
antleroom

Inside the Shed of the Antlerman

I'm slightly nervous about posting this article. Not only am I a little freaked out by this place myself, but I have a feeling I might get some flak for it. The problem is, I'm completely in awe ...

Trending 3,489