A new exhibition called "Wallace, Darwin and Evolution" will be on show at The Natural History Museum at Tring (Hertfordshire, UK) from 13 October 2008 until 18 January 2009 (CLICK HERE for more information). It will feature a nice selection of Wallace and Darwin specimens, most of which have never been on display to the public before. These specimens include several birds of paradise collected by Wallace in Australasia and a beautiful drawer of exotic beetles from Wallace's private collection which were painstakingly restored by yours truly a few years ago (see http://www.nhm.ac.uk/about-us/news/2006/feb/news_7654.html).

The advert for the exhibition reads "Explore a rare display of original specimens and documents from two of Britain’s greatest scientists. Find out how Alfred Russel Wallace, educated in Hertford, jointly discovered the theory of natural selection with Charles Darwin and why Darwin's pigeons contributed more to his study of evolution than his famous finches."

Tring poster

The Tring exhibition is essentially a greatly expanded version of the London Natural History Museum's small exhibit entitled "Happy Birthday Evolution [by Natural Selection]" which commemorated the 150th anniversary of the reading of the Darwin-Wallace papers on July 1st 2008. This display occupied only one wall mounted case and ran from 27th June until 28th July. See the pictures of it below.

I helped design both exhibits and was surprised to discover how much work and planning goes into even small displays such as these. A massive amount of time and effort must have gone in to the huge Darwin exhibition which opens at the NHM in November - see http://www.nhm.ac.uk/visit-us/whats-on/temporary-exhibitions/darwin/index.html

Darwin-Wallace exhibition at NHM 2008. Copyright G. Beccaloni

 Darwin-Wallace exhibition at NHM in July 2008. Copyright G. Beccaloni

 Darwin pigeon skeleton in NHM 2008 exhibition. Copyright G. Beccaloni  
Pencil drawing of fish from Rio Negro by Wallace in Darwin-Wallace exhibition at NHM in 2008. Copyright G. Beccaloni
Darwin pigeon skeleton in NHM exhibition. Copyright G. Beccaloni Pencil drawing of fish from Rio Negro by Wallace in NHM exhibition. Copyright G. Beccaloni

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Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith