Purpose of this Blog...

You may have noticed that not all books are equal in capturing children's imaginations and in cultivating those innocent, tender souls. My goal is to help you find the ones that do!
(Painting by Mary Cassatt: "Mrs Cassatt Reading to her Grandchildren" -1888)

Monday, December 15, 2014

More New York: Face to Face with a T-Rex and "T.R"!

One place I really looked forward to visiting during our recent trip to New York was the American Museum of Natural History.  I totally anticipated the "wow" factor of seeing giant dinosaur bones mounted and looming above my head (and I wanted to preview this museum for a future visit with my grandson!)

I walked in and my jaw dropped!  Talk about dinosaur bones!  We came face to face with a dramatic representation of an imagined prehistoric encounter: a Barosaurus rearing up to protect its young from an attacking Allosaurus.

The amazing fossil collections that are open to public view occupy the entire fourth floor of the Museum as well as a separate exhibit that is on permanent display in the Theodore Roosevelt Rotunda and Memorial Hall, which is known as the Museum's "grand entrance" (lobby).

Why Theodore Roosevelt?  I found out during our visit that Theodore Roosevelt, Sr., the father of our 26th U.S. President, was one of the founders of the Museum!  Before becoming President, Theodore Roosevelt, Jr. was New York City's Police Commissioner and also Governor of the state of New York.  

Adorning the walls of the great entry hall that surround these huge dinos were several inspiring quotes from Teddy Roosevelt, carved into the walls. I especially liked his quote about YOUTH:

Born into a wealthy family in New York City, Roosevelt was a sickly child who suffered from asthma. To overcome his physical weakness, he embraced a strenuous life. He was home-schooled and became an eager student of nature.

In an exhibit about his life I read:

Like many children, young Theodore collected bird nests and eggs, seashells, insects and minerals.  But Roosevelt, a precocious boy, measured and described his specimens.  He took notes as he observed living animals and birds.
As Theodore's interests matured, he visited the American Museum of Natural History often - both the exhibitions and the collections behind the scenes.  At age 19 he published his first scientific work, a list of the birds he and a friend identified on summer in New York's Adirondack Mountains.

Check out all the Theodore Roosevelt memorabilia I saw (along with lots of science books!) in the Museum's gift shop for kids...

Moving up to the fourth floor, we hurried to see more bones (there was also a "Dino Store" on this floor)...

Mammuthus - Mammoths were widespread during the Ice Ages.
Some had woolly fur to keep them warm.  This "nonwoolly" mammoth lived in southern
parts of the U.S., which were not covered by glaciers.

Well, hello!
Makes me think of Molly Idle's cute book, Tea-Rex!
Go here for my past post.

Eventually, our fun Night at the Museum was over, and we said a sad farewell to the Christmas Dino out on the front steps. If you haven't been to this Natural History Museum, I really hope you can make it someday - we had a blast!

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