The study of objects, whether works of art, artifacts, or natural history specimens, has always been an integral part of the curriculum of Dartmouth College. The first reference to the development of a collection at Dartmouth dates to 1772, only a few years after the College was founded. In that year David McClure wrote to the first president of the College, the Reverend Eleazar Wheelock, that he had "collected a few curious Elephant Bones found about six hundred miles down the Ohio, for the young Museum at Dartmouth." While most of the natural history collections were transferred to another museum before the Hood Museum of Art was built in 1985, there remains a diverse and large collection that serves the teaching mission of the college, including an internationally recognized scientific instrument collection, a large collection of textiles and costumes, and the original mastodon tooth that entered the collection over two hundred years ago.
Last Updated: 8/2/13