Today in Smithsonian History: March 17, 1977

Wake Island Rail (Gallirallus wakensis) by J. Fenwic Lansdowne

Wake Island Rail (Gallirallus wakensis) by J. Fenwick Lansdowne

March 17, 1977 “Rails of the World: Paintings by J. Fenwick Lansdowne” opens at the National Museum of Natural History. The exhibition contains 42 paintings, representing 132 species of birds, combining art and science with meticulous realism in watercolors by the artist and naturalist. A widely distributed family of long-toed marsh birds, rails include coots, gallinules, crakes and soras. The paintings were created to illustrate the book “Rails of the World,” written by Smithsonian Secretary S. Dillon Ripley.

Posted: 17 March 2017
About the Author:

The Torch relies on contributions from the entire Smithsonian community.