The Case of the Missing Pygmy Hippo

A post for the Pink Palace about a missing hippo skeleton:

The Pink Palace Family of Museums

In the 1970s, the Pink Palace Museum was changing from an eclectic collection of oddities to a museum with a cohesive mission to preserve and exhibit the cultural and natural history of the Mid-South. Staff members started the zoo salvage program to build up the museum’s natural history collection. When an animal died at the Memphis Zoo, the zoo director decided whether or not he wanted the zoo to keep the animal. If not, the zoo’s vet notified the Collections Department at the Pink Palace where the curator of collections or the staff biologist decided if the animal would further the museum’s educational goals, which included teaching anatomy and evolution. The museum tried to pick up available carcasses within four hours of being notified. The animals were brought to the museum to be prepared in the biology labs. Carcasses were frozen on premises and later processed for use in exhibits…

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2015 in Books, July

Alright, the real reason I haven’t been reading as much these days is because I’m pregnant and have a toddler. The time I would normally spend reading–toddler’s nap time–is spent taking naps of my own. This first trimester is straight knocking me out. Still, as ever, I read.

  • Serenity: Better Days by Joss Whedon et al
    • I don’t usually read graphic novels. Not for any real reason, I just find that I generally gravitate towards other genres. However, as a massive fan of Firefly, I basically devoured this book. I loved getting to see my favorite characters in new story lines. If you were a fan of this sadly too short TV series, I highly recommend that you check out the graphic novels. They’re shiny.
  • Memphis Afternoons: A Memoir by James Conaway
    • “And once Harley left me sitting in the dark parking lot outside the Pink Palace, Memphis’s fusty old museum, while he climbed a drain pope, opened a window he had unlatched during visiting hours, and stole a nineteenth-century dueling pistol.” I can’t confirm that this actually happened, but I’m looking into it. Conaway also grew up across the street from my house, which made his memories of my neighborhood interesting to read. I expect to mine some of his material for my history column for our neighborhood newsletter. Could I be more of a historian?
  • Captain Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis de Bernières
    • This novel is fantastic. I like fiction that is set during World War II, and this work is the first one I’ve read that took place in Greece during that period. What amazed me the most was how my perspective of the war changed along with the characters’ experiences. I never spent much time thinking about the differences between Nazis and Fascists or the individuals caught on the wrong side of history. I know this book is going to stay with me because of the questions and emotions it raised.