Natural history museums are a fantastic public resource for entertainment and education. The local museum is probably where most people are exposed to the prehistoric past and where most paleo enthusiasts are born (Me included!). Some natural history museums, like Beneski, are affiliated with a university that enable them to provide services a city museum could not.
On this episode of the Paleo Policy Podcast I had the pleasure of speaking with the Head of Collections and Operations at the Beneski Museum of Natural History at Amherst College, Hayley Singleton. She is responsible for the 200,000 specimens across the museum’s nine collections, which includes fossil trackways, Native American artifacts, meteorites, fossilized plant material from the Ordovician Period (448 MYA – 443 MYA). Hayley and I discuss the opportunities made available to Amherst students by museum, public outreach initiatives, the museum’s collections and how those specimens were obtained, and the case of stolen theropod tracks.