Published: February 19, 2020

Carl Cotton: Chicago's Original Black Taxidermist

Emily Graslie, Chief Curiosity Correspondent, Brain Scoop


Carl Cotton (1918 - 1971) was the Field Museum's first African American taxidermist - perhaps Chicago's first professional one - and his work can still be seen on display today. But for many years, we knew little about the extent of his contributions to the museum and the field of taxidermy as a whole. Today, thanks to hours of research from Museum staff and through collaborations with Carl's family, we have a better picture of this creative and talented person and a deeper appreciation for his work.

To learn more check out Finding Carl Cotton.