Made possible by a gift from Donald Dickey and Hisae Dickey

Extraordinary people accomplish extraordinary things; Donald Ryder Dickey (1887–1932) was such a person. He had a vision to create a museum dedicated to the study of vertebrate zoology focused on Southern California, the Southwest, and the Pacific slope of Mexico and Central America. In fulfillment of this dream, he created an extraordinary collection consisting of a ten-thousand-volume library, a photographic archive of more than four thousand images, and a bird and mammal collection numbering more than fifty thousand specimens documented with detailed field notebooks. Mr. Dickey’s vision and energy carried the project forward until his untimely death at the age of forty-five in 1932. Eight years later his widow, Florence Van Vechten Dickey, donated the entire collection to UCLA. It was divided between the UCLA Library and the department of biology, now the department of ecology and evolutionary biology. Every book from the collection was given a bookplate identifying it as part of the Donald Ryder Dickey Library of Vertebrate Zoology. Strong collections can always be made stronger and richer. Donald Dickey Jr. has long been interested in his father’s collection and legacy, and over the years he has supported the preservation of various parts of the collection. In 2006 he and his wife, Hisae, created an endowment to provide ongoing resources to enhance his father’s collection. The gift has enabled the Louise M. Darling Biomedical Library’s History and Special Collections for the Sciences to buy important retrospective books and journals in natural history and the field of vertebrate zoology, with an emphasis on birds and mammals. The endowment also supports preservation and conservation efforts for the collection.

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Bookplate with an illustration of a bird on a tree branch and text reading the name of the endowment

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