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University of Iowa News Release


March 18, 2010

PHOTOS: Kent Photo Human Chess--Official UI photographer Fred Kent took this photo of students conducting a human chess game on the old football field, near the current location of the UI Main Library; Giant Sloth Bones--Vertebrae and scapulae from the juvenile giant sloth found by UI researches in southwest Iowa.

Old Capitol Museum, Museum of Natural History to launch new exhibits

Two new exhibits offered by the Old Capitol Museum and Museum of Natural History will open Thursday, March 25, at the Old Capitol Museum. An opening reception, which is free and open to the public, will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. in the first floor rotunda of Old Capitol.

--"The U of I Through the Lens of Fred W. Kent," will be presented by Old Capitol in the Hanson Family Humanities Gallery.

--"Mysteries in the Valley of the Sloths: Current research with the Tarkio Valley Sloth Project," from the Museum of Natural History, will be featured in Old Capitol's second floor rotunda.

Both exhibits can be viewed through Aug. 1, 2010.

Following the opening reception and in conjunction with the "Mysteries in the Valley" exhibit, the UI Explorers Lecture will be presented at 7 p.m. in the Old Capitol Senate Chamber.  The talk, "Old Bones, New Opportunities: A Student's Journey through the Tarkio Valley Sloth Project," is a collaborative effort by Meghann Mahoney, assistant education coordinator at the Museum of human-chessNatural History, and Holmes Semken, UI professor emeritus of geoscience.

"UI Through the Lens of Fred W. Kent" offers photos from the University Archives Kent Collection from the 1920s to 1960s. Kent, once a consulting photographer at the university, took numerous photos from all aspects of campus life. The Kent photographic archive contains more than 50,000 prints and negatives. The exhibit will feature many photographs that are not often displayed.

sloth"Mysteries in the Valley of the Sloths" offer visitors an opportunity to learn about the Ice Age mysteries being explored through the Museum of Natural History's Tarkio Valley Sloth Project, a groundbreaking and multidisciplinary research effort involving the UI and other institutions.

"Though these two exhibits are very different, they show the flexibility and diversity of the museums by exhibiting two themes, demonstrating the museum's ability to be diverse and unique," said Shalla Ashworth, director of operations for the Pentacrest Museums.

For more information visit the Old Capitol Museum Web site or the Museum of Natural History Web site

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500

MEDIA CONTACTS: Sarah Horgen, UI Museum of Natural History,, 319-335-0606; Kathrine Moermond, Old Capitol Museum,, 319-335-0546; Steve Parrott, University Relations, 319-384-0037,; Writer: Holly Berg