Sunday, July 24, 2016

Report from Far Afield

Where: Field Museum of Natural History

When: July 2016

Hello again faithful readers and apologies for my absence.  I was in the lovely city of Chicago this past weekend, at a law librarians' conference.  Yes, that's just as exciting as it sounds.

Amidst the wining, dining, meeting, and greeting, I found some time to go to a museum.  I realize there are people who go to new cities and don't go to a museum as their first activity, but I think they need to get their priorities in order.

I arrived on Friday afternoon, and within a couple of hours, was on my way to the Field Museum of Natural History.  I'd seen the Art Institute on a previous trip, which I blogged about here: The Art Institute of Chicago

My brother used to work at the Field Museum, and my grandparents had been very impressed with it when they honeymooned in Chicago in 1933, so I decided to honor my family connections and see it for myself.  Spoiler alert: it was well worth the trip.  From SUE, the world's largest and most complete T. Rex. who dominates the main entryway to Lucy, one of our human ancestors to the gem collection, to a display on lichen, to the mummies in the Egyptian room - it was all wonderful.  I could easily have spent an entire day there and still not seen everything.

The ultimate highlight was the special exhibition of The Terra Cotta Warriors.  I missed them when they were at the National Geographic Museum in DC, so this was a great second chance for me.  You don't get those often in life, so I decided to make the most of it.  The display was excellent - explaining the purpose of the warriors and their history, so that when you made your way into the room where several of them were on display, you understood what you were seeing.  The thought of thousands upon thousands of these pieces being buried for centuries and only discovered by accident just takes your breath away.  The enormity of it is awe-inspiring.

Verdict: If you are in Chicago, I highly recommend a visit to the Field Museum.  Allow a full day to see everything.  If you have limited time, download the app to get a highlights tour.

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