100 Years – 100 Objects: Arrow Tip Lodged in Buffalo Skull

January 20, 2009

The Houston Museum of Natural Science was founded in 1909 – meaning that the curators of the Houston Museum of Natural Science have been collecting and preserving natural and cultural treasures for a hundred years now. For this yearlong series, our current curators have chosen one hundred exceptional objects from the Museum’s immense storehouse of specimens and artifacts—one for each year of our history. Check back here frequently to learn more about this diverse selection of behind-the-scenes curiosities—we will post the image and description of a new object every few days.

Look closely at the right side of this skull
to see the arrowtip.

This description is from Dan, the museum’s curator of vertebrate zoology. He’s chosen a selection of objects that represent the most fascinating animals in the Museum’s collections, that we’ll be sharing here – and on hmns.org – throughout the year.

This skull is of historical importance as it provides evidence of plains Indians hunting buffalo.  The front half of the arrowhead is entirely embedded in the skull, leaving the basal half exposed.  It was collected in 1939 from Erath County, just outside Ft. Worth, Texas.

Discover many other animals that roam the wilds of Texas in the Farish Hall of Texas Wildlife at the Houston Museum of Natural Science.

You can see larger and more detailed images of this rare specimen – as well as the others we’ve posted so far this year – in the photo gallery on hmns.org.

A closeup of the arrowhead embedded in this skull.
Authored By Dan Brooks

As curator of vertebrate zoology, Dr. Brooks has more backbone(s) than anyone at the Museum! He is recognized internationally as the authority on Cracids - the most threatened family of birds in the Americas. With an active research program studying birds and mammals of Texas and the tropics, Brooks advises several grad students internationally. At HMNS, Brooks served as project manager of the world-renowned Frensley-Graham Hall of African Wildlife, overseeing building by an incredibly diverse array of talent by some 50 individuals. He has also created and/or served as curator for various traveling exhibits, including "Cracids: on Wings of Peril".

4 responses to “100 Years – 100 Objects: Arrow Tip Lodged in Buffalo Skull”

  1. Michael says:

    I cannot wait for the three upcoming exhibitions! Terracotta, Genghis Khan, and Diamonds will be great! I know it!

  2. Michael says:

    When will the Amazonian feathers go on public display?

    Do you have any photographs of HMNS in between 1909 and 2009? I want to see what the museum in between looked like.

    It is sad that almost all the major museums have backed out from displaying this wonderful exhibit =(

  3. Michael says:

    I have to say that the Cullen Hall of Gems and Minerals makes HMNS the best museum in a world by a mile, wouldn’t you concur?

  4. Erin B says:

    Hi Michael,

    We are proud of the Cullen Hall of Gems and Minerals – it is certainly one of the world’s best mineral exhibitions.

    The Amazonian feather collection will be on display here later this year; check back here and on hmns.org for details.

    We are planning on including historical photos of the Museum in our HMNS at 100 section online. Thanks for your interest in the Museum!

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