Contact: Tina McDowell of the Carnegie Institution of Washington,
202-939-1120 or Email:

What do hybrid corn, the
Richter scale, the discovery that the universe is expanding, and
the real Indiana Jones have in common? The Carnegie Institution of
Washington. Carnegie is one of the best-kept secrets in Washington
and it is turning one hundred years old. To commemorate this
landmark birthday, it is opening its historic 16th Street building
to the public with the exhibition, Our Expanding Universe:
Celebrating a Century of Carnegie Science. We invite the press to
a special exhibition preview December 4, 2001, at 10 a.m. at 16th
and P Streets, NW, Washington, D.C., (P Street entrance) to
experience first-hand the remarkable story behind this small
organization that has had an enormous impact on science. A dramatic
display of artifacts, photos, documents, and historic expedition
footage-designed by Threshold Studio of Alexandria, Virginia-makes
Our Expanding Universe an exhibition to remember.

Carnegie researchers have been responsible for some of the most
extraordinary scientific discoveries of the past century. A few of
the fascinating people featured in the exhibition include
astronomer Edwin Hubble, who discovered that the universe is
expanding; aviator Charles Lindbergh, who made the first-ever
aerial archeological survey at Carnegie’s Mayan sites and later
became a Carnegie trustee; Charles Richter, creator of the
earthquake-measuring Richter scale; Vannevar Bush, Carnegie
president who directed the science effort for World War
II-including the Manhattan Project-from Carnegie’s 16th Street
building; archeologist Earl Morris, the inspiration for the movie
character Indiana Jones; geneticists and Nobel laureates Barbara
McClintock, who found that genes can jump between chromosomes and
Alfred Hershey, who determined that DNA is our genetic material;
and George Ellery Hale, who built the largest telescopes of their
day at Carnegie’s Mt. Wilson Observatory.

“Even those of us in the Carnegie family were surprised by some
of the stories about the institution that were uncovered by our
exhibition staff,” says Carnegie president Maxine Singer.

Visitors will also experience some of the science at Carnegie
today-from investigating the large-scale structure of the universe,
the nature of dark matter, and the characteristics of extrasolar
planets, to studying genes that could lead to plants that grow in
the dark and animals that regenerate parts of their bodies.

On December 4th, President Maxine Singer, a molecular biologist,
will introduce the exhibition to the press, while a panel of
distinguished Carnegie scientists will be on hand to answer
questions. In an informal setting, Vera Rubin will be available to
talk about dark matter and other mysteries of the cosmos. Alan Boss
can give you the latest on the search for extrasolar planets.
Robert Hazen can address what is happening in the search for the
origins of life on Earth and the possibilities of finding it
elsewhere, and Louis Brown can elaborate on the science effort for
World War II, including the nuclear physics of that era.
Refreshments will be served.

Our Expanding Universe will be open free to the public from
December 7, 2001, to May 31, 2002. The hours are noon to 5 p.m.,
Tuesdays through Sundays, with extended hours to 8 p.m. on
Thursdays. The exhibition is closed Mondays and holidays. The
Carnegie Institution is located 3 blocks east of the Dupont Circle
Metro stop at 16th and P Streets, NW. For more information about
the press preview call Tina McDowell at 202-939-1120 or see