Sea Serpent Day Redux

Last year the Libraries featured Konrad Gesner from its rare book collections at the Joseph F. Cullman 3rd Library of Natural History for Sea Serpent Day. So what to feature this year? Libraries collections feature a plethora of fabulous snake images, but none that truly qualify as a friend of Nessie. The closest I could come to a dragon was this wonderful botanical image, The Dragon Arum, from New illustration of the sexual system of Carolus von Linnaeus . . ., 1807, by Robert John Thornton. After some browsing on Galaxy of Images I finally tried searching for "monsters" and found what I was looking for: "In the Clutches of the Monster," by Joseph Ferdinand Keppler, A Selection of Cartoons from Puck by Joseph Keppler, 1893. Published in "Puck" May 28, 1890. The Louisiana lottery was among the most corrupt public lotteries in the United States, drawing much criticism and prosecution. This cartoon appeared at a time when Louisiana was attempting to recover from this disgrace, an attempt that was more »

A Guy Named Joe

Scrolling through the Libraries online exhibition, Scientific Identity, you will see a lot of famous Joes, including Joseph Priestley, Joseph Ferdinand Keppler, and Joseph Jérôme Le Français de Lalande. Today we're featuring Joseph Henry, the first Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution. The Smithsonian Institution Archives has a number of quotes by Henry on the institution and its role in research in this country: . . .the principal object of the organization is the discovery of new truths, rather than the application of known principles to useful purposes. Smithsonian Annual Report for 1851, p. 10. Should the government of the United States be dissolved, and the Smithsonian fund dissipated to the winds, the "Smithsonian Contributions to Knowledge" will still be found in the principal libraries of the world, a perpetual monument of the wisdom and liberality of the founder of the Institution, and of the faithfulness of those who first directed its affairs. Smithsonian Annual Report for 1852, p. 12.

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