Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Paris Finds: Specimen Cabinets

specimen cabinets, les Galeries de Paléontologie et d'Anatomie comparée

specimen cabinets, les Galeries de Paléontologie et d'Anatomie comparée

While wandering through les Galeries de Paléontologie et d'Anatomie comparée in Paris, I came across these cabinets. Wow, I thought - I wonder if you can still get these, and what they cost, and what else one might use them for.

steel specimen cabinets with wood drawers

Well, according to the American Museum of Natural History, "The older generation of specimen cabinets was often wooden, and it’s not uncommon for many collections to re-use old wooden drawers in modern steel cabinets." But current cabinets are generally made of steel. I'm sure it serves the purpose better, but it sure doesn't have the same lovely look! The photo above comes from Spacesaver, one of the companies making museum-quality specimen cabinets. For more examples, take a look at the Viking Metal Cabinets at Britannia Storage Systems.

wood geological specimen cabinet

But I did finally find places where you can get wood specimen cabinets - from some British cabinet makers. The cabinet above is a geological specimen cabinet from Chadwick End Cabinets.

wood entomological cabinet

And this entomological cabinet comes from Alan Wakefield, Bespoke Cabinet Maker.


Cynthia Friedlob said...

These are lovely and would be quite useful, but my original reaction to the concept was to laugh. The way some of us hang onto our stuff, it all should be catalogued and stored in specimen cabinets!

Jeri Dansky said...

Cynthia, for some reason I never thought about it that way - but you are absolutely right!