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Forgotten World War II-Era Watercolor Paintings

Presented by University of South Carolina Herbarium at Online/Virtual Space

Jun 10 - 30 2020
Forgotten World War II-Era Watercolor Paintings

Artist Minna Fernald donated over 320 paintings of Florida wildflowers to the university in 1942, providing a rich record of the state’s past ecological life.

Botanist Mark Whitten was rummaging in an old drawer in the University of Florida Herbarium for tracing paper when he discovered something unexpected: hundreds of World War II-era watercolor paintings, each of a unique Florida plant.

Likely untouched in the 20 years since the herbarium’s move into Dickinson Hall, the collection was largely forgotten, but the same cool, dark conditions intended to preserve the herbarium’s more than 400,000 specimens also preserved the paintings.

Artist Minna

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