The Sedgwick Museum of Earth Sciences, Downing Street, Cambridge
01223 333456 / www.sedgwickmuseum.org/exhibits/darwin.html
Open: weekdays, 10:00–13:00 and 14:00–17:00; Saturday, 10:00–16:00. Closed on Sunday
After the massive success of Charles Darwin’s work on species, the fact that geology was so central to his early scientific career and continued as a lifelong passion has been largely forgotten. The Sedgwick Museum’s collections include over 2000 of the rocks and some of the fossils that Darwin collected on the voyage of HMS Beagle (1831–1836). They are accompanied by the specimen notebooks that Darwin used to catalogue and record descriptions of the rocks as he collected them.
These unique artifacts will make up the core of a new exhibition ‘Darwin the Geologist’. The exhibition will present Darwin’s less well-known early scientific career as a geologist and the history of his important geological collection. It will explore themes of Darwin’s early scientific training, his collecting, recording and analysing practices on the voyage and the grand geological theorizing which were a feature of his early scientific publications. It concludes with a section on what we can learn from Darwin’s geological specimens and work today.
The exhibition is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.