Margaret Taylor-Burroughs (1915-2010) was a visual artist and author who had a great influence on
the cultural and artistic world of the United States, especially around the Chicago
area, with a focus on African-American experience. She co-founded important
avenues for artistic expression such as the Ebony Museum of Chicago and the
Lake Meadows Art Fair.
The Ebony Museum, today
called the DuSable Museum of African American History, started out in her
living room in 1961, and today is the oldest museum dedicated to black culture
in the entire country. Both her art and her writing celebrate African-American
experience and cultural identity.
Happy birthday to Franz Boas, often called the father of American anthropology. Boas, who was born on July 9, 1858, worked at the American Museum of Natural History from 1896-1905, during which he organized and led the Jesup North Pacific Expedition (1897-1902). This undertaking set our to investigate the links between the people and the cultures of the Pacific Northwest Coast of North America and the Eastern Coast of Siberia. Ostensibly the goal of the expedition was to prove the Bering Strait Migration theory which postulated that the North American continent was populated by the migration of Asian peoples across the Bering Strait. However, Boas was more concerned with documenting the cultures on both sides of the Northern Pacific that he and many other anthropologists feared were soon to be lost to colonialism and acculturation.
The fruits of his labors are on view in a number of locations throughout the Museum, including the Hall of Northwest Coast Indians. The hall, which is the Museum’s oldest, opened in 1900 to showcase the collections and research of the expedition. Take a look at the hall.
This morning, curator Denton Ebel gave a tour of the Ross Hall of Meteorites on Facebook Live. On the tour, Ebel gave viewers a look at the oldest specimens in the Museum, meteorites from Mars, and the “largest meteorite in captivity.”