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In 1935, Henry Raven set out with Arthur S. Vernay, Stephen F. Hopwood, and other hunters, academics, and guides on a research trip to Burma. He served as lead scientist, collector, and primary photographer. Following along the northern section of Chindwin River, the group set out to document the indigenous birds, tribes, and customs of the area for further comparison and study back at the AMNH.

Before Raven left on the expedition, he first had to itemize and arrange for all the things he would need for the following three months. Some he would acquire personally, others were supplied by the museum, and even more items would have to be purchased with traveling funds once the team was en route through England, Bombay, and Rangoon.

‘List of Material Required for the Burma Expedition.’ Filed in Vernay, Folder  III-B3, Division of Vertebrate Zoology, Department of Mammalogy Archives, AMNH.

‘List of Material Required for the Burma Expedition.’ Filed in Vernay, Folder III-B3, Division of Vertebrate Zoology, Department of Mammalogy Archives, AMNH.

‘List of Material Required for the Burma Expedition.’ Filed in Vernay, Folder  III-B3, Division of Vertebrate Zoology, Department of Mammalogy Archives, AMNH.

‘List of Material Required for the Burma Expedition.’ Filed in Vernay, Folder III-B3, Division of Vertebrate Zoology, Department of Mammalogy Archives, AMNH.

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Have you ever walked through the halls of the American Museum of Natural History and imagined what it was like for a scientist in the 1920s to gather specimens and interpret important data? As a seasonal intern for the CLIR Hidden Collections project, I’m helping uncover and organize information documented by the museum and its staff for all interested researchers. Recently I’ve been working with the papers of Henry Cushier Raven, an Associate Curator of Comparative and Human Anatomy at the Museum and the plethora of his scientific reports- one of which had a very unique origin story…

AMNH neg.311245

“Hall of Ocean Life, showing assembling whale skeletons”, December 1925.
AMNH neg.311245

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