The Beneski Museum of Natural History, Amherst College is located on the campus of Amherst College in Amherst, Massachusetts. It showcases fossils and minerals collected locally and abroad, many by past and present students and professors. The Museum is located in the Beneski Earth Sciences Building, completed in 2006. It is a member of Museums10.
The Beneski Museum of Natural History's collection dates back to the earliest days of the college. Edward Hitchcock, who joined the faculty in 1825 and served as the third president of Amherst College from 1845 to 1854, was deeply interested in the sciences and encouraged alumni to send back scientific specimens from all over the world. During his presidency, Hitchcock raised funds for the building of the Octagon, the first home of Amherst's natural history collection. In 1855, the College built Appleton Cabinet with a donation from Samuel Appleton to house the Hitchcock Ichnological Cabinet, the Gilbert Museum of Indian Relics, and the Adams Zoological Museum.
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