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John P. Finley, Tornadoes: What they are and how to observe them (New York, 1887)

This is the first book written in English devoted to tornados. Finley served in the US Army Signal Service, which was tasked with weather forecasting in 1870. Finley’s study of tornados led him to issue unofficial tornado forecasts.

The Collections also holds two other works by Finley: Report of the Tornadoes of May 29 and 30, 1879 (1881) and Tornadoes: Their special characteristics and dangers (1882).

Galileo's World Exhibition Location

Source: History of Science Collections

Section: Renaissance of Discovery

Section Number: 1

Object Number: 12

Subject Area(s): Meteorology, Military

Time Period: 19th Century

Region(s): United States, North America

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Exhibit Gallery OERs

Wondertooneel: Women and Museums

Wondertooneel Learning Leaflet

What were women doing in the museum? 

Levinus Vincent, a wealthy Dutch merchant with ties to the East Indies, created a spectacular 'Chamber of Wonders' natural history museum in Haarlem. Visiting dignitaries admired his museum, including Peter the Great and King Charles III of Spain. The detailed depictions of interior spaces include figures of women engaged in a variety of activities. Museums such as Vincent's offered women opportunities for participation in the natural sciences as donors, collectors, discoverers, visitors, patrons, lecturers and curators. This OER explores the significance of women in these early museums.


Maria Merian: World-Traveling Entomologist

Maria Merian Learning Leaflet

How do art and travel benefit natural history? 

Maria Merian (1647-1717), skilled in both art and natural history, studied the relationships between flowers and insects. She conducted field expeditions around the world, carried out research in gardens and museums, and produced detailed sketches and beautiful paintings, and even bred insects to aid in her entomological investigations.