• Mama Told Me not to Come
  • Randy Newman

Happy Birthday, Randy Newman!

Randall StuartRandy" Newman (b. November 28, 1943) is an American singer-songwriter, arranger, composer, and pianist who is known for his distinctive voice, satirical pop songs, and film scores. Learn more about this 2013 inductee at the Library and Archives.

Audio clip: Randy Newman, “Mama Told Me not to Come,” recorded at the House of Blues, Los Angeles, CA, on May 27, 1999. From the Frederick S. Boros Audio Recordings.

The National Archives and Records Administration is taking a second look at the CIA’s proposal to delete its employees’ emails after they leave the agency.

The record-keeping agency “intends to reassess” the proposal to destroy old emails of all but 22 top officials at the spy agency, chief records officer Paul Wester wrote to the agency last week.

Until 7 November, delve into the Maison Martin Margiela archives at our Singapore boutique. Discover the exhibition ‘Identities’, featuring pieces from our ‘Artisanal’ collections, ‘Tabi’ boots, ‘Trompe l’oeil’ garments, and more iconic pieces that encapsulate the universe of the Maison.

Boutique located at the Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, 2 Bayfront Avenue.


Images from the Jonas Salk Papers, 1926-1991

Dr. Jonas Salk was born on this day in 1914

Dr. Jonas Salk is best known for his development of the world’s first successful vaccine for the prevention of poliomyelitis, licensed in the U.S. in 1955. He has also conducted important research in the prevention and treatment of influenza, multiple sclerosis, cancer, and acquired immune deficiency syndrome.

The Salk Papers constitute an exhaustive source of documentation of Dr. Salk’s professional activities, but very few materials relating to his personal life can be found in the collection. Most of the papers cover the period from the mid-1940s to the early 1980s. Best documented are Dr. Salk’s activities from the mid-1950s to the early 1960s — activities largely related to the development of the Salk polio vaccine.

The papers include general correspondence, files relating to polio, subject files, writings by Dr. Salk, photographs, artifacts, and research materials. Also included in the collection are materials created by Dr. Salk’s laboratory staff members and papers generated by offices of the Salk Institute. 


Travel back in time and explore the Museum archives on October 5th!

Celebrate New York Archives Week by coming to the Museum Library to discover the Museum’s rich history of scientific exploration from around the world. Rarely seen collections of field notes, films, photography, artwork, and memorabilia will be on display to tell the hidden stories behind the Museum’s world-famous dioramas and exhibitions.

Watch early moving-image footage from historic Central Asiatic Expeditions to Mongolia, in which a team led by Roy Chapman Andrews discovers the first dinosaur eggs, or browse the original landscape studies painted in the field during Carl Akeley’s perilous expeditions to Africa. The Library staff will explain how these one-of-a-kind objects are cared for and give hands-on demonstrations of the new Digital Special Collections, an online endeavor to make the Library’s extensive image collection available for research and reference. 

This event is part of the New York Archives Week, which runs October 5-11, 2014, an annual celebration aimed at informing the general public about the diverse array of archival materials available in the metropolitan New York region.

The tours, which run between 12 pm - 5 pm are free with Museum admission.

Register today!


While the Iowa Women’s Archives includes several collections from women who came to Iowa as war brides, this 1946 wedding album features their only documented “war husband,” Dr. Frederick Blodi. He and Women’s Army Corps member Ottilie Schmakal made headlines in 1946 for their wartime romance with a storybook ending. 

Born in Modling, Austria, in 1917, Schmakal became childhood sweethearts with Blodi, but had little contact with him after fleeing to the U.S. at the outbreak of World War II. She eventually obtained American citizenship, then joined the WACs with the intention of finding Blodi. In 1944, she completed two rounds of training at Fort Des Moines — the first army training facility for women.

In July 1945, Schmakal was stationed in Frankfurt as an interpreter. Armed with information that Blodi had completed medical school and been drafted, then imprisoned by the German army, she obtained leave to travel to Vienna to conduct her search. The pair were reunited at her first stop — a makeshift hospital in an old park where Blodi was working as a doctor.  

There she learned that the Nazis had imprisoned Blodi for helping two Austrian men escape conscription. At the end of the war, all his fellow prisoners were shot, while he was spared because of his medical background. The British Army took control of the area and as a result Blodi worked in British-run hospitals for some time. After the liberation, he found a canoe and traveled down the Danube back to Vienna.

The Blodis married in 1946, moved to Iowa City six years later, and had two children, Barbara and Chris. Dr. Blodi attained international fame for his work in ophthalmology at the University of Iowa. He died on October 30, 1996.

Iowa Digital Library: Ottilie and Frederick Blodi wedding album

Ottilie Schmakal Blodi interview on Talk of Iowa, August 12, 2013: ”The World War II Love Story of Otty and Fred Blodi”

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Since we were so hopped up on coffee yesterday we missed Mammal Monday! So why not add it to Taxidermy Tuesday?

Here is a Black-Backed Jackal. Black-Backed Jackals are omnivores and they feed on a variety of prey such as gazelle, hares, rodents, birds, lizards, snakes, young ungulates, insects, fruit, berries, domestic livestock and carrion.

© The Field Museum, CSZ77774

Black-Backed Jackal (Canis mesomelas) Zoology specimen 1467.

5x7 negative



On the 15 November 1630, German astronomer Johannes Kepler died aged 58.

Kepler formulated three major laws of planetary motion which enabled Isaac Newton to devise his  3rd Law - For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.

Working form the carefully measured positions of the planets, Kepler mathematically deduced three relationships from the data: 1) the plants move in elliptical orbits with the Sun at one focus; 2) the radius vector sweeps out equal areas in equal times; and 3) for two planets the squares of their periods are proportional to the cubes of their mean distances from the Sun.

We are lucky enough to have a first edition of Kepler’s ‘Astronomia Nova’ (1609) within the Rare Book Collection of the Ri & thought that we would give it a little outing in the Faraday Theatre to celebrate the life of this amazing individual.

International Dinosaur Month.

Fossil Friday Protoceratops. 

© The Field Museum, GEO81449.

Protoceratops skeleton with fossil eggs. Late Cretaceous fossil from Djadochta beds, Gobi Desert, Mongolia. Hall 38 Case 42. Pre-installation Geology specimen P14046. Ceratopsian.

8x10 negative