Roxie Laybourne Testing Materials from Aircraft Part

image for Roxie Laybourne Testing Materials from Aircraft Part
Category
Historic Images of the Smithsonian
With Smithsonian Secretary Alexander Wetmore's encouragement, Laybourne accepted a short-term appointment in 1944 in the Bird Division at the National Museum of Natural History, working with taxidermist Watson Perrygo and curator Herbert Friedmann. Known as the "Feather Lady," Laybourne pioneered the field of forensic ornithology at the Smithsonian Institution by studying the detailed microscopic structure of plumaceous (downy) feather barbules and creating a technique of identifying species of birds from fragmentary feather samples. Her methods revolutionized aviation safety by creating a technique of identifying birds involved in aircraft bird strikes. That work led to the development of the first laboratory in the world dedicated solely to feather identification. The methods she developed are now routinely applied to studies of prey remains, evidence from criminal cases, and anthropological artifacts.
For more images of Roxie Laybourne, see SIA2009-2205, SIA2010-0575, SIA2010-0580, SIA2010-0639, SIA2014-07398, SIA2014-07403, SIA2014-07404, SIA2014-07405, SIA2014-07406, SIA2014-07407, SIA2014-07411, SIA2014-07413, SIA2014-07417, SIA2014-07421, SIA2014-07431, SIA2014-07434, SIA2014-07441, SIA2014-07442, and SIA2014-07448.
Summary
Roxie Laybourne was an American ornithologist known for her ability to identify species of birds involved in bird strikes. She is pictured bent over at a counter in the Bird Division at the National Museum of Natural History examining material from an aircraft part. There are two glass vials with rubber stoppers, a metal box, and a piece of an aircraft on the counter.
Contained within
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 04-086, Box 2, Folder: 5
Contact information
Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20024-2520, SIHistory@si.edu
Restrictions & Rights
No restrictions
c. 1980s
Standard number
SIA2014-07403
Author
Unknown
Subject
Laybourne, Roxie C. 1910-2003
National Museum of Natural History (U.S.) Division of Birds
Topic
Biology
Scientific apparatus and instruments
Forensic sciences
Research--Equipment and supplies
Birds--Behavior
Ornithology
Women
Aircraft accidents--Investigation
Airports--Bird control
Aeronautics--Safety measures
Feathers
Birds--Anatomy
Aircraft bird strikes
Aircraft accidents
Smithsonian Institution--Employees
Forensic scientists
Birds
Ornithologists
Aircraft engines
Place
United States
Physical description
Number of Images: 1; Color: Color; Size: 5w x 3h; Type of Image: Person, candid; Medium: Photographic print
Smithsonian Archives - History Div
Type
Classification
Photographic print
Person, candid