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The Man and the Museum

The Man and the Museum exhibit focuses on the field work, collections, and research of John K. Strecker, for which the Baylor University Museum was renamed and later became part of the Mayborn Museum Complex. Strecker was one of a new breed of naturalist emerging at the turn of the 20th Century. A consummate collector, Strecker became Director of the Baylor University Museum in 1903. Traveling by horse and buggy, he collected specimens from at least 25 different counties in Texas.

Strecker was named President of the Texas Academy of Sciences (TAS) in 1931 and held leadership positions and memberships in many organizations, known widely as a humorous and genuine man. TAS posthumously published the entire works of John K. Strecker in 1933. The Baylor University Museum was renamed the Strecker Museum in his honor in 1940 by Baylor President and former Texas Governor Pat Neff.

The Strecker Museum held the distinction of being the oldest continuously operating natural history museum in Texas until it closed in September 2003 in preparation for its move to the Mayborn Museum Complex. It had been housed in a number of buildings on the Baylor campus, including the Carroll Science Building, Pat Neff Hall, and the Sid Richardson science building. Over the years, the museum introduced many students and the public alike to the wonders of the natural sciences.

Displaying some of Strecker's most important collections, the exhibit includes species such as an endangered sea turtle collected in the Atlantic Ocean, a Great Horned Owl from Refugio County, Texas, and the Pseudacris streckeri or Strecker's Chorus Frog, that was named for him. The Man and the Museum will be on display from April 10 - 24, 2007 in Strecker's Cabinets of Curiosities room.

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