Behind on my blogging ever since end of the term, moving to a new apartment, and starting a new internship! A few weeks ago, I took my dearest friend and now official roomie (we share a room now :D!) to Philadelphia’s Mutter Museum.
Owned by the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, the Mutter Museum houses one of the largest collections of unique and odd medical cases and pathological symptoms and medical equipment used in the past. It was donated for the purpose of medical research and to educate the general public.
(image from Wiki)
Many of these cases are preserved in the form of wax figurines that displayed gruesome disfigurements and many unknown, untreated conditions. For example, a model of a woman with a horn coming out of her head can be seen. Some unique displays include the skeleton of the worlds tallest man, which was originally housed in the Academy of Natural Sciences. There is also real specimen preservation of large tumors, cysts, organs, and sadly many cases of teratology (birth defects).
One of the newer exhibits holds Albert Einstein’s brain. According to my History of Science class, Einstein had died in Princeton, NJ. After his death, an examination of his brain was done. His brain had traveled across the United States (possibly to other parts of the world) to be examined by several doctors and scientists. They found that Einstein’s brain is actually much smaller than an average male (Einstein’s brain is closer to the size of a female). Though they found that his parietal lobe was very swollen and that he house many more glial, or support brain cells than the average person. Perhaps that’s what contributed to his genius?
My professor from my History of Science class really emphasized the common man’s fascination with geniuses. Perhaps it is because they are so not relatable and extraordinary that we need to know what makes them tick? What makes them so special and different compared to the every day man?
Really interesting stuff, right? So, if you are in the Philly area, I highly recommend this museum. Especially if you have a strong constitution and deep interest in medical cases or weird and unusual things. As you can imagine, what the museum holds is very sensitive, therefore the exhibits were closed to photography.
What I can show you are photos of our souvenirs.
Naomi got a white blood cell Giant Microbe to add to our collection in the apartment. I was about to get the red blood cell Giant Microbe, when I saw in the corner of my eye a neuron necklace.
That’s right folks a neuron necklace. This image is actually from an Etsy site, so if you want one too, click the link! No words can adequately express my sheer joy and happiness when I purchased this piece of jewelry. The neuron is my favorite cell in the body just because of the power it holds, the unique and wonderful form and function it has, and since it looks like a palm tree (as Megan says).
And thus my love for science and museum burns ever strong.