Next the class took the Metro subway to visit the National Museum of Natural History of the Smithsonian Institution, particularly the Hall of Human Origins. In addition to the public exhibits, we had a behind-the-scenes tour from the manager and a scientist of the Human Origins Program, checking out skulls, skeletal material, and study skins plus research on core samples revealing the history of the past million years in the Olorgesailie prehistoric site of Kenya, where stone tools and fossils are abundant. It was a long day but a great trip.
The Human Evolution/Anthropology class traveled to Washington, DC, on Tuesday November 17 to see the gorillas and orangutans inside the Great Ape House as well as in their outdoor enclosures (or brachiating high above along the orangutan “O Line”). Led by Dr. Alex Werth, the class was able to see some interesting behaviors, from locomotion and feeding to chest-pounding, chasing, and other displays of dominance.