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Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Museum Spotlight: Yale Peabody Museum

After watching Dinosaur Wars on PBS I was reminded of my several trips to the Yale Peabody Museum as a child and I wanted to share some information about this museum with you and relive my experiences too!

The Yale Peabody Museum is a part of Yale University located in New Haven, Connecticut. One of the main draws of this museum is the Great Hall of Dinosaurs. In this hall they have skeletons of Apatosaurus, Stegosaurus, Camarasaurus and many others. I remember the first time I went there I was 5 or 6 and my Dad and I went out for the day. I loved all of the dinosaurs but by far the thing that stuck with me the most was the skeleton of Archelon, the largest species of turtle, which is mounted high up on the wall. I don’t know why, but this image has always stuck with me (the other thing I remember from that day was having to pay all of those coins into the meter to park!). This is an image of that very same Archelon that I saw but this is from when it was in the old museum before it was mounted on the wall. Imagine how that looked to a 5 year old!

One of the main participants in the Dinosaur Wars was O. C. Marsh. His uncle was the one who provided the money to fund the Yale Peabody Museum. Marsh became a professor at Yale and was the first professor of paleontology in the United States. He went out to the western states of the US and dug up many fossils and then brought many of these home and added them to the Yale collection. The Great Hall was built specifically for housing the collection of O. C. Marsh.

This is the Apatosaurus, one of the main attractions in The Great Hall.

Besides dinosaurs, the museum has exhibits of Human Origins, Mammalian Evolution, Native American Cultures, Birds of Connecticut, Life in Egypt, and a hall of Geology and Minerals. Currently there is a special exhibition on black holes and space. There is a little something for everyone in this museum.

I went to college in nearby Hamden, CT and somehow never made it back over to the museum in my four years there. I certainly am looking forward to going back again. You can visit the museum website for more information on their collections and what is being exhibited.

Copyright © 2011 by The Maiden’s Court


  1. My first memory of the Peabody Museum dates from when I visited there with my girl scout troop. I remember being amazed by the large hall with the dinosaur exhibit. Have you been to Dinosaur State Park in Rocky Hill?

  2. Sarah - I forget that you were from around here. I have been to Dinosaur State Park - but it was a long time ago - probably for a girlscout thing! I thought that was pretty cool too!

  3. We were in the area for a wedding a couple of years ago and headed up to New Haven and Yale, but never made it. Too bad, we would have enjoyed it. I had the Peabody on my list to visit. Hopefully, we will be up that way another time soon and I will make sure we don't miss it.

  4. Librarypat - I hope you do get the chance to go someday!


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