An Explorer's Adventures: Alexander von Humboldt at the Americas Society

By Jennifer Eberhart

Americas Society's Unity of Nature: Alexander von Humboldt and the Americas is well-prepared and tells a truly remarkable story of the renowned Prussian scientist, both visually and in print.

The gallery at the Americas Society is currently hosting an exhibition entitled “Unity of Nature: Alexander von Humboldt and the Americas.” It tells the story of Humboldt, the then-famous 19th-century scientist adventurer, now largely unknown especially in the United States.

You’ve likely never heard the name of this intrepid observer before, but by the time you wander through the Americas Society’s small three-room gallery, you’ll know just how important he is.

Humboldt traveled throughout the Americas cataloguing plant life and the environment in rainforests, jungles, mountaintops and beyond. His research made it possible not only for other scientists to better understand the largely unexplored Americas, but for the common man to “see” the world at a time when photography was not yet widespread. Artists followed Humboldt on his adventures, and Humboldt in turn inspired artists to travel to the places he wandered, documenting the exotic locales....

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