Bone Hall

1964 – Permanent
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National Museum of Natural History
10th St. & Constitution Ave., NW
Washington, DC

2nd Floor, West Wing

See on map Floor Plan

Hundreds of skeletons of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and fishes—ranging from the gigantic extinct Steller sea cow to the tiny pocket mouse—are shown in characteristic poses and grouped by order to illustrate their relationships. The groupings of these skeletons show how bone structures evolved in adaptation to environment. Compare, bone for bone, one skeleton against another and observe unique skeletal features in any animals.

Many of the skeletons in the Bone Hall have been on view since 1881—first in what is now known as the Arts and Industries Building, and since the 1960s in their current form. The skeletons represent an unparalleled study collection of every major group of vertebrate animals.

Download the augmented reality app Skin and Bones (for Apple devices) to get a glimpse of how these specimens move and look when alive.