Founding a Museum of Paleontology

Barbara R. Stein

in On Her Own Terms

Published by University of California Press

Published in print October 2001 | ISBN: 9780520227262
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520926387 | DOI:
Founding a Museum of Paleontology

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This chapter relates the events that led to the rift between Alexander and her former professor, John C. Merriam. It began when Merriam unexpectedly left the field of research and devoted his time to self-promotion and administrative matters. When he accepted the position as president of the Carnegie Institute of Washington, Alexander reacted with anger and disbelief. Merriam's publication of a paper under the Carnegie Institute byline—using information taken from university specimens Alexander helped procure—severed her friendship with Merriam. The discussion also notes the various changes to the university presidency and the museum directorship, as well as the nature of their dealings with Alexander. It introduces the second natural history museum founded by Alexander, which was the University of California Museum of Paleontology. Several photographs of Joseph Grinnell, the exterior and interior of the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, Innisfail Ranch, and Alexander and Kellogg's expeditions are included.

Keywords: rift; John C. Merriam; Carnegie Institute; university president; museum director; Museum of Paleontology; Vertebrate Zoology

Chapter.  7513 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of Science and Technology

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