Behind the public façade of any great museum there lies a secret domain: one of unseen cabinets, priceless specimens and hidden lives.
'Dry Store Room' is the fascinating personal biography of one of London's most formidable establishments, told by one of its own. Richard Fortey, author of the bestselling 'The Earth: An Intimate History' and senior palaeontologist at the National History Museum, takes us on a journey through the Museum's hallowed underworld with characteristic wit and charm.
In the modern era of molecular biology, Fortey celebrates the coming of age of the Natural History Museum which continues to pioneer investigations into science, evolution and the natural world. Indebted to the motto 'never throw anything away', old 'spare' bones from an extinct giant bird suddenly become cutting–edge science with the discovery that DNA can be extracted from them, and ancient fish can now be tested with the latest equipment to determine the rise of pollution.
As Fortey expertly guides us through the Museum's 'memory of the world', he also examines some of its most fascinating specimens – the eccentric family of colourful curators that has tirelessly dedicated itself to research in evolutionary science.