Darwin: VISIT THE EXHIBIT (click on the heading Darwin)
Birds' eggs and sea shells, beetles and coins, moths and minerals—as a child, Charles Darwin collected all of these and more. Born in 1809 to a wealthy family in rural England, he spent hours watching birds and lying under the dining-room table, reading. He was an indifferent student, though, and school bored him. He despaired of learning Latin and memorizing verse, "for every verse was forgotten in 48 hours." But he never tired of studying the details of the natural world.
Darwin chartered his own course, as geniuses tend to do. His work thrills and inspires. Here was a life lived fully and authentically.