Dry Storeroom No. 1 by Richard Fortey
The Secret Life of the Natural History Museum

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‘Dry Store Room No. 1’ is an intimate biography of the Natural History Museum, celebrating the eccentric personalities who have peopled it and capturing the wonders of scientific endeavour, academic rigour and imagination.

Behind the public façade of any great museum there lies a secret domain: one of unseen galleries, locked doors, priceless specimens and hidden lives.Through the stories of the numerous eccentric individuals whose long careers have left their mark on the study of evolutionary science, Richard Fortey, former senior paleaontologist at London's Natural History Museum, celebrates the pioneering work of the Museum from its inception to the present day. He delves into the feuds, affairs, scandals and skulduggery that have punctuated its long history, and formed a backdrop to extraordinary scientific endeavour from Darwin to the present day. He explores the staying power and adaptability of the Museum as it responds to changes wrought by advances in technology and molecular biology – 'spare' bones from an extinct giant bird suddenly become cutting-edge science with the new knowledge that DNA can be extracted from them, and ancient fish are tested with the latest equipment that is able to measure rises in pollution.

'Dry Store Room No.1’ is a fascinating and affectionate account of a hidden world of untold treasures, where every fragment tells a story about time past, by a scientist who combines rigorous professional learning with a gift for prose that sparkles with wit and literary sensibility.

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About Richard Fortey

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Richard Fortey is a senior paleontologist at the Natural History Museum in London. Life was short-listed for the Rh„¢ne-Poulenc Prize in 1998, Trilobite! was short-listed for the Samuel Johnson Prize in 2001, and The Hidden Landscape was awarded the Natural World Book of the Year in 1993. He was awarded the Lewis Thomas Prize for science writing by Rockefeller University in 2004. He was Collier Professor for the Public Understanding of Science at the University of Bristol in 2002 and is now a Fellow of the Royal Society. He lives in London.
Published August 19, 2008 by Vintage. 352 pages
Genres: Political & Social Sciences, Nature & Wildlife, Travel, Science & Math, Professional & Technical, Education & Reference, Sports & Outdoors, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Dry Storeroom No. 1

The New York Times

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A behind-the-scenes memoir of London’s Natural History Museum — home to about 80 million specimens and a collection of extremely eccentric scholars.

Sep 14 2008 | Read Full Review of Dry Storeroom No. 1: The Secr...

Austin Chronicle

Natural history museums, such as the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C., and the American Museum of Natural History in Manhattan, face a great challenge in our era of Jurassic entertainments and Grand Theft Auto.

Aug 22 2008 | Read Full Review of Dry Storeroom No. 1: The Secr...

Science News

One museum scientist’s .

Jan 30 2009 | Read Full Review of Dry Storeroom No. 1: The Secr...

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