California Academy of Sciences 150th Anniversary Celebration
150th Anniversary Celebration 150 Years: A Timeline 150 Years of Research The New Academy
Steinhart Aquarium staff behind the scenes at the Aquarium.

Academy Director Barton Evermann and Ignatz Steinhart begin planning a new aquarium “as fine and complete as any in
the world.”

Alvin Seale, distinguished ichthyologist and fisheries expert, helps design the Steinhart Aquarium, which opens on September 29, 1923.

Earl Herald, Aquarium superintendent and host of the TV program Science In Action, oversees a major retrofit of the Aquarium.

Aquarium Director John McCosker pursues coelacanths, flashlight fish, sharks and penguins for public display. In 1994, John is appointed as the new McCosker Chair of Aquatic Biology.

Robert Jenkins leaves the National Aquarium in Baltimore to become Director of Steinhart. Voters approve Proposition C, and planning for a new Aquarium for the 21st century begins.

Anthropology | Aquatic Biology | Botany | Entomology | Herpetology | Ichthyology | IZG | Library | Ornithology & Mammalogy | Steinhart Aquarium | Morrison Planetarium | Education | Exhibits | Operations | Academy Store

Steinhart Aquarium | Life in the Water

Living Collections
This aquatic world is home to more than 6,000 animals, representing nearly every underwater environment on Earth. Visitors come face to face with over 600 species of fishes, invertebrates, reptiles, amphibians and black-footed penguins.

Sea Monkey Success
Aquarium staff found that difficult-to-feed tropical fishes thrived on brine shrimp from San Francisco Bay’s salt evaporation ponds. Hatching and selling the tiny crustaceans became a business for the San Francisco Aquarium Society. Aquarium staff developed new techniques to ship brine shrimp eggs and profits soared. For its contribution to the successful breeding of brine shrimp Steinhart received $1 million in royalties.
Marine Mammals
Pipefishes were Earl Herald’s main research interest, but his article on blind dolphins appeared in Science magazine in 1969. He began to record and study dolphin sounds to understand echolocation. A year later he began studying “Butterball,” Steinhart’s famous resident manatee. At that time, everything known about these marine mammals came from those investigations.

Community Support
San Franciscans have funded Steinhart's day-to-day operations since 1923 and, on two occasions, they have rallied to do even more:1958: Voters approve Proposition B, a $1.5 million bond to finance needed renovation. 1995: Voters overwhelmingly pass Proposition C, a $29 million bond to rebuild the earthquake-damaged Aquarium.


150th Anniversary Celebration | 150 Years: A Timeline | 150 Years of Research | The New Academy

©2003 California Academy of Sciences


California Academy of Sciences 150th Anniversary Celebration