Snapshots in Time

NEW EXHIBIT OPENING! With Special Talk from Dr. Hans-Dieter Sues*

May 9, 2015    10:00 AM – 5:00 PM

This unique exhibit brings us a snapshot in time of Jurassic life 150 million years ago.

Directly across from the paleontology viewing lab, Snapshots in Time: The Unique Paleofauna of the Solnhofen Limestone showcases some of the worlds rarest Late Jurassic fossils discovered in the Solnhofen Limestone, of southern Germany.

No other locale has produced more iconic fossils from this time period than the Solnhofen Limestone. Rockford’s own Burpee Museum will display some of the most unique fossils from the Solnhofen, on loan from a private collection!

To enhance your experience at the exhibit’s grand opening, Dr. Hans-Dieter Sues, Senior Curator of Paleontology at the Smithsonian Institution: National Museum of Natural History, Washington, DC will be giving a special presentation at 2pm!

Ticket Info

Members: FREE!

General Public:
Special Talk only from Dr. Hans-Dieter Sues: $5
Special Talk and New Exhibit Access: $10
Special Talk and Full Museum Access: $15

Project Passenger Pigeon

Burpee Museum is proud to be part of Project Passenger Pigeon, a movement to commemorate and learn from the extinction of the Passenger Pigeon 100 years ago. Project Passenger Pigeon encompasses all aspects of the birds’ demise and seeks to educate people about current conservation issues. As a part of the Project Passenger Pigeon, the museum will be installing an exhibit that combines exhibit work provided by Project Passenger Pigeon and specimens from the museum’s permanent collection.

Joel Greenberg's "A Feathered River Across the Sky: The Passenger Pigeon's Flight to Extinction" will be on sale at the lecture and opening!

Joel Greenberg’s “A Feathered River Across the Sky: The Passenger Pigeon’s Flight to Extinction” will be on sale at the lecture and opening!

The exhibit will open officially on September 9, 2014 with a Mahlburg Scholars Lecture by Joel Greenberg. Joel is the author of “A Feathered River Across the Sky: The Passenger Pigeon’s Flight to Extinction” as well as a lifelong birder and naturalist. He will be speaking about the extinction of the Passenger Pigeon 100 years ago and why it is important to us now. Please join us for his lecture on Tuesday, September 9, 2014 at 7pm, doors will open at 6pm. Admission to the lecture is $8 for adults (13 and up), $7 for kids (4-12) and free to Burpee Members; admission includes general admission to the museum.

29 Days to Homer

More cool installation happening in the SupplyCore Hall of Paleontology in preparation for “Homer’s Odyssey: From the Badlands to Burpee” – the crew from Xibitz has been hard at work most of this week! What do you think will be going on this wall??

More installation elements for the Homer exhibit. (c) Burpee Museum

More installation elements for the Homer exhibit.             (c) Burpee Museum

30 Days to Homer

Today is May 29, 2013, in exactly one month the “Homer’s Odyssey: From the Badlands to Burpee” will premier as Burpee Museum’s newest permanent exhibit!

(C) Burpee Museum

Part of the new “Homer” exhibit. Can you tell what it is?              (c) Burpee Museum

This week the first stages of installation for the exhibit began in SupplyCore Hall of Paleontology, as seen in the picture above. Can you guess what this structure might be for?

We’ll keep you updated as more pieces of this incredible exhibit go up!

A Stone Aquarium

So, how does one go about making a stone aquarium? Let me tell you:

First, you go to Kemmerer, WY and excavate some fossil fish … lots and lots of fish.

Fossil Fish Excavation: Kemmerer, WY, August 2011

Then, the fossils are prepared in the lab. (By great preparators none the less. Great work Mel, Steve, Michelle, Anna, Margo and Jenny!)

A fully prepped Prisci

Now comes the fun part, choose the specimens to go on display!

Laying out specimens and deciding who will debut in the exhibit.

And then the tricky bit: custom backings and mounts for each and every specimen. (Many, many thanks Cory!)

Starting the mounting process …

Custom backs, mounts, and screws …

… insert the appropriate fish

… and make mounts for all the specimens!

Throw in some cases, signage, and lighting ….. and then POOF! you have a stone aquarium!


“Tertiary Treasure Trove: Adventures in the Green River” opens tomorrow (November 10th, 2012) at the Burpee Museum.This exhibit is <just> a sneak-peek of a larger, permanent exhibit we plan to open in the fall of 2013 about the flora and fauna of the Green River formation. We hope you’ll take the time to stop by and check out our newest addition sometime soon!