EML Blog

Ernst Mayr's Japan Prize

In August, the Library received as a gift from Ernst Mayr's daughters Susanne Harrison and Christa Menzel, the International Prize for Biology (the Japan Prize) awarded to Dr. Mayr in 1994 by the Emperor of Japan.  It consists of the Japan Prize medal, made of copper, silver and gold, with patterns in inlaid gold; a silver urn with a gold chrysanthemum emblem in a custom-made wooden box; a navy blue cloth with white Japanese letters; a white satin chrysanthemum with one white and two red ribbons; two Japanese rice paper envelopes;...

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MCZ Archives Collection Chosen for Harvard University Library's Colonial North American Project

The Ernst Mayr Library's Collection of Historical Manuscripts has been chosen to be included in the Colonial North American Project, a multi-year Harvard University Library project "funded by Arcadia to survey, process/catalog, conserve, digitize," and make accessible "all known archival and manuscript materials in the Harvard Library that relate...

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Who was Ruth Turner?

[written by Bruno Costelini, Science without Borders intern at the Ernst Mayr Library]

Ruth Dixon Turner (1914-2000) was one of the foremost marine scientists of the 20th century. She taught at Harvard but carried out research all over the world, working with wood-boring mollusks, such as shipworms. In the late 1970s after the discovery of hydrothermal vents she was the first woman to dive in the deep submergence vehicle Alvin, which she kept on doing for the next couple of decades.

While going through her papers, housed at the Library, we came across the following...

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Notes from the Hassler archives: Peruvian skulls

[This post is part of a series on the archives of the 1871-1872 Hassler expedition, written by Bruno Costelini, Science without Borders intern at the Ernst Mayr Library]

By the end of May 1872 the Hassler deep-sea dredging expedition had reached the warm waters of Peru, the steamer anchoring in Callao, next to Lima. There once again the fame of Professor Louis Agassiz would pay off with invitations to excursions on newly built railroads up the Andes and fancy dinners that much impressed the young James H. Blake:

 

A short walk brought us there, a very large house, almost a palace. White with long marble columns or pillars in front. We first went into a room where was a servant to black our boots brush our clothes etc, then was ushered into the gentlemans drawing room […] When we entered there were some 20 gentlemen dress very stylish […] Soon we were introduced and invited to the adjoining room to a cocktail. […] I was called by Mr. Wigs & introduced to his daughter whom I took in to dinner. There were sixty-two in all, about ½ as many ladies as gentlemen. We had about 40 different courses and sat down at 5 and arose about 9.30. Everything the country afforded was in the table it seemed – meats, fowl, gellies, pastry many kinds and fruit, six or seven varieties.

 

Views of Lima, Peru
"Views of Lima, Peru, from the Hassler scrapbook"

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