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Seventy-seventh Street and Central Park West, New York City

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THE MUSEUM IS OPEN FREE TO THE PUBLIC ON EVERY DAY IN THE YEAR. THE AMERICAN MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY was established in 1869 to promote the Natural Sciences and to diffuse a general knowledge of them among the people, and it is in cordial cooperation with all similar institutions throughout the world. The Museum authorities are dependent upon private subscriptions and the dues from members for procuring needed additions to the collections and for carrying on explorations in America and other parts of the world. membership fees are,


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THE MUSEUM LIBRARY contains more than 60.000 volumes with a good working collection of publications issued by scientific institutions and societies in this country and abroad. The library is open to the public for reference daily Sundays and holidays excepted from 9 A. M. to 5 P. M. THE MUSEUM PUBLICATIONS are issued in six series: American Museum Journal, Annual Report, Anthropological Papers, Bulletin, Guide Leaflets and Memoirs. Information concerning their sale may be obtained at the Museum library.

GUIDES FOR STUDY OF EXHIBITS are provided on request by the department of public education. Teachers wishing to bring classes should write or telephone the department for an appointment, specifying the collection to be studied. Lectures to classes may also be arranged In all cases the best results are obtained with small groups of children.


WORKROOMS AND STORAGE COLLECTIONS may be visited by persons presenting membership tickets. The storage collections are open to all persons desiring to examine specimens for special study. Applications should be made at the information desk.

THE MITLA RESTAURANT in the east basement is reached by the elevator and is open from 12 to 5 on all days except Sundays. Afternoon Tea is served from 2 to 5. The Mitla room is of unusual interest as an exhibition hall being an exact reproduction of temple ruins at Mitla. Mexico.

The American Museum Journal


Frontispiece, Bust of Rear Admiral Robert E. Peary


Preservation of the World's Animal Life. . HENRY FAIRFIELD Osborn


The Status of Forestry in the United States



[With photographs illustrating the moving of the big tree section in the Museum]

A Name for History: Peary.


A bust of Admiral Peary, executed by William Couper, the American sculptor, has been presented to the Museum by Mrs. Morris K. Jesup

The Fur Seal. .........



A statement of some biological facts on which can be based an opinion as to the effects of various methods of sealing

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A subscription to the JOURNAL is included in the membership fees of all classes of members of the Museum

Subscriptions should be addressed to the AMERICAN MUSEUM JOURNAL, 30 Boylston St.. Cambridge, Mass, or 77th St. and Central Park West, New York City

Entered as second-class matter January 12, 1907, at the Post-Office at Boston, Mass.



Clay model of bust given to the American Museum by Mrs. Morris K. Jesup.

Medal of honor presented to Admiral Peary by the Peary Arctic Club on the third The star is made of polished fragments of anniversary of the discovery of the North Pole. the Ahnighito meteorite set in gold about a central diamond. On the circle of gold five of Peary's Arctic achievements are inscribed: "The Crossing of Greenland, 1892"; "Securing the Great Meteorites 1897"; "Insularity of Greenland, 1900": "Farthest North, 1906"; "North Pole, 1909." The medal has been deposited with other Peary medals in the National

The American Museum Journal


APRIL, 1912

No. 4



By Henry Fairfield Osborn

Sa palæontologist I have a convincing sentiment toward conserva-
tion. In every student of the history of life, from its beginnings
until to-day, there is born a sentiment for conservation. It
springs from a long and intimate even though imaginary acquaintance
with the world's animal life during vast periods of time. Every hunter
of fossils puts himself backward in time and lives in imagination with his
plants and animals. How could one trace the birds or the mammals through
their arduous ascent from reptiles, through the vicissitudes of geographical
and geological changes, without acquiring a peculiar admiration and sym-
pathy for them? Thus through following its structural evolution from
fragments preserved in the rocks, each creature gains historical and archi-
tectural as well as æsthetic value. Each becomes a living monument of
adaptation and of beauty, which connects the past with the present.

All lovers of architecture regard the destruction of the Parthenon of
Athens by Turkish cannon in the year 1687 as an act of barbarism. Yet
it would be possible for modern archæologists and architects to restore this
temple of Greece to a large measure of its former beauty and grandeur.
It is far beyond the power of any men however, of all the naturalists of the
world, to restore a single forest, a tree or flower, a bird or mammal, even
a single vanished individual, let alone a vanished race: once lost, the loss
is irreparable. Only nine years were required to build the Parthenon;
it has taken millions of years to produce any single offspring of Nature.
When an ax or a bullet penetrates the delicate living tissue, replete with
this long history of contact with sunshine, oxygen, water and soil, a temple
is torn to pieces.

Although done in the name of civilization, we may hold it an act of
barbarism when we destroy a forest of spruce and grind it up into wood
pulp to pass beneath the press of the "yellow journal." The progress of
conservation marks the advance of a true, as distinguished from a false
civilization. The conservation sentiment, feeble in its inception a few
decades ago, becomes daily more powerful, owing in part to the general
altruistic spirit of the times, in part to the direct efforts of associations
like the Audubon Society, and to the writings of nature poets, like John
Muir and John Burroughs, as well as of field naturalists, like Frank M.
Chapman of our own Museum. Substitution of the camera for the shot-
gun is exerting its influence: the work of Kearton, of Shiras, of Schilling,
Dugmore and Rainey, has spread a new knowledge of living animals.

In every part of the English-speaking world the principle of conservation is taking firmer hold on public opinion, as shown both in expression in literature and action in legislation. The lobbyist is becoming powerless because contending with a growing sentiment which is fast attaining

strength in commercial interests. During the past two years the legislatures of states like New York, Massachusetts and New Jersey, have enacted laws prohibiting the sale of all wild game, and in several states laws have been passed limiting the use of destructive weapons. The United States and Canada have followed up their great measures for the preservation of their forests with the creation of animal preserves in several of these forests, in addition to setting aside other especial preserves for the bison and the prong-horn antelope. Great Britain has been equally active in Africa, and it is interesting to observe Germany and Austria now taking up the animal conservation movement and forming their own especial societies. Only the Latin countries, France and Italy, seem to be behind in a recognition of the necessity for the preservation of wild animal life.

It is gratifying to realize that the American Museum of Natural History has held from the first a position as one of the centers of the conservation movement. For among the hundreds of thousands who annually pass


Young foxes in one of the Museum's series of through the institution's halls

groups showing the mammals of New York State

are many who gain knowledge and an abiding interest in nature, the very mainsprings of the conservation idea. It is cause for congratulation also that the Museum's influence for the preservation of animal life is continually increasing as advances are

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