Several large-format atlases are currently waiting in the Martha E. Wright Conservation Lab for their custom-made boxes to be made. Within these atlases are hundreds of beautifully hand-painted engravings of specimens observed by the scientists aboard the naval fleet charged with surveying the Pacific Ocean on the United States Exploring Expedition. This expedition, often called the “U.S. Ex. Ex.”, sought to document everything from the charting of lands and oceans, the description and illustration of flora and fauna, and the anthropological study of peoples encountered on the journey. To read more about this highly influential expedition, we recommend giving this Smithsonian article a read.
As October is the spookiest month of all, we thought we would share some of the more “frightening” animals depicted by John Cassin, an American Ornithologist, in the United States Exploring Expedition’s Atlas. Mammalogy and Ornithology, 1858.