News Articles

Published February 29 | Ichthyology

In 2014, the State Museum acquired Dr. Howard Reisman's (emeritus professor at Long Island University) personal collection of fish specimens. The collection has over 2,500 individual specimens, including a substantial number of samples from the marine waters surrounding Long Island.

...

Published February 29 | Political History

A liquor chest used by soldiers in the American Revolution and the War of 1812 was recently donated to the New York State Museum. The chest was donated by the descendants of Captain Abraham Swartwout (an officer on General George Washington's staff during the American Revolution) and Brigadier...

Published January 14 | Ornithology

Alyssa FitzGerald is a Ph.D student at SUNY Albany and works at the Museum to conduct research for her doctoral program. Alyssa's research is focused on studying three closely-related species of thrushes. She wants to know why and how these birds, which look very similar to the untrained...

Published January 14 | Mammalogy

A 20-foot long Cuvier's Beaked Whale skeleton was acquired by the State Museum in 2014. Worldwide, there are less than 250 Cuvier's Beaked Whale specimens in collections. These whales, also known as goose-beaked whales, are known to be one of the deepest diving whales. One Cuvier's Beaked Whale...

Published January 14 | Historical Archaeology

Jordon Loucks is a Ph.D student at SUNY Albany and works at the Museum to conduct research for his doctoral program.

Jordon's research is...

Published January 14 | Mineralogy

From rocks to gems to minerals, there are thousands of specimens in the Museum's mineralogy collection. "Every mineral can tell you a story," says...

Million Dollar Beach Site
Published December 9 | CRSP

One of the first things archaeologists seek to understand when they are investigating a site is the stratigraphy. This entails both documentary research and ground-truthing through test excavations like shovel test pits (STPs) or small excavation units. At its most basic, stratigraphy is...

Stratigraphy is the analysis of strata or soil layers. Some areas, like rocky escarpments, may have very limited or no soil and others, like...

Context and Association are the two most important concepts in archeology. Put simply, they ask, where was an object (or feature or site) found and what was found with it? For an archaeologist to make an educated interpretation about what an artifact means, they need to know as much as possible...

Understanding the stratigraphy of the Million Dollar Beach Site helps us to build a case for the context and associations of the artifacts we find...

At the Million Dollar Beach Site there are two main divisions to the soils we encountered: natural soils, and soils that were affected by some sort of modern disturbance. The first set of soils includes most of the site and the majority of the campground area. The second set of soils includes...

Disturbed soils ranged in their appearance and form and included long, linear features created by buried electrical lines to large pit features...

It was deemed likely during the initial set up of the survey that identified the Million Dollar Beach Site that the areas underneath the road,...

Million Dollar Beach Site
Published December 9 | CRSP

The Million Dollar Beach Site was identified in August of 2013 during a survey of the area around the DEC parking lot and campground prior to road improvements (see Photo 1). This survey proceeded directly into limited test excavations after the discovery of almost 2,000 prehistoric artifacts...

Published December 1 | Exhibitions

In October 2015 the Museum opened a newly renovated area of Bird Hall - "Tidal Bays and Marshes". There are a total of six "bays" in Bird Hall, and Museum staff will be renovating each bay to give visitors a renewed Birds of New York exhibition experience.

A major goal of the renovation...

Published October 9 | Paleobotany

Did you know that fossils of the Earth's oldest trees are part of the State Museum's collections? In the late 19th century, scientists uncovered evidence of the world's oldest known forest in Gilboa, NY (Schoharie County). Since then, the Museum has collected a variety of specimens from the site...

Published August 11 | Mineralogy

Dissakisite-(Ce) - Ca(Ce,REE)(Mg,Fe2+)(Al,Fe3+)2Si3O12(OH) - the magnesium analogue of the more common allanite (Ce), was found in a specimen from the Henry Rudy Farm, in Orange County. It occurs as millimeter-size pink crystals...

Published July 27 | Ornithology

Two papers have been published describing ornithological research by NYSM scientists. The papers are based on Ph.D. dissertation work conducted by Dr. Joel Ralston, former University at Albany graduate student, and NYSM Graduate Fellow under the supervision of NYSM Curator of Birds, Dr. Jeremy...

Published June 26 | CRSP

Since 2012, archaeologists from the State Museum have been working alongside a highway construction project in Utica, uncovering artifacts from the early 19th century.

Why? The archaeologists are members of the Cultural Resources Survey Program (CRSP)at the State Museum. CRSP helps...

Published June 26 | Social History

The Museum recently acquired a series of 1917 Franklin County women's suffrage petitions from Jean Kubaryk, a teacher at North Warren Central School District. Ms. Kubaryk had been displaying the petitions in her classroom for years, but decided to donate the petitions to the Museum so they can...

Published June 26 | Ethnography

The Museum recently acquired a unique collection of 20th century Abenaki Native American materials. The collection was donated by Rodney Johnson of Rochester, NY. Rodney wanted to find a permanent home for the collection that had been handed down through four generations of his family - he chose...

Published June 26 | Historical Archaeology

The State Museum recently acquired an archaeological collection from the former Institute for Long Island Archaeology at Stony Brook University. This collection consists of artifacts from 47 significant archaeological sites, including both prehistoric Native American and historic Euro-American...

Published June 26 | Exhibitions

On June 15, 2015, State Museum Director Mark Schaming presented a renovation master plan for the Museum's galleries to the New York State Board of Regents. The master plan calls for 35,000 square feet of new exhibitions, a changeable wall system and new interactive technology and media. Click ...

Published December 9 | Cultural History

The New York State Museum’s history collections contain two frog costumes for humans and one frog costume for a dog. These costumes belonged to Harry and Friede DeMarlo, a vaudeville couple that once played circuses and vaudeville houses all over the world, ultimately retiring to a farm in...

Published December 9 | Archaeology

When former Research and Collections Assistant Director and Curator of Ichthyology Dr. Robert Daniels retired in late 2012, he took with him over 30 years of specialist knowledge of the Museum’s fish collection, as well as key information about the Museum’s history and administrative activities...

This loss made Pasquini and Rataul realize there was a need to capture and preserve the first-person accounts, stories shared among colleagues, and personal remembrances that shape an individual’s institutional memory. “Some of this information can and does live on in the written and oral...

Lake George
Published December 3 | Native American Archaeology

New York State Museum archaeologists have identified archaeological remains associated with a small Early Archaic camp dating to approximately 8,000 B.C. along the shore of Lake George in Warren County, New York. The site produced bifurcate and Genesee projectile points that would have been used...