Discover – Explore – Connect:
Engaging with the Environment through Historical Records in the Natural Sciences.

Discover the work of A.B. Williams, the first naturalist for the Museum who also was under contract for the Cleveland Metroparks. Williams created the Trailside Museums, forerunners of today’s nature centers and pioneered outdoor education in Ohio. Williams set a goal of giving these areas a new meaning in the public eye through educational programs.

Explore the curriculum using the original field notes of A.B. Williams in the archive repository, allowing students to develop a deeper sense of how their environment looked in the past, understand how the past has shaped the present, and gain critical skills to evaluate both historical documents and the natural environment.


Connect the dots and learn how yesterday’s observations have relevance today. Students become scientists, collecting and analyzing data, setting the stage for inquiry and discussion on the factors driving  changes in the local environment. Science comes alive through field studies conducted in the same forest studied by A.B. Williams.

Cleveland Museum of Natural History
1 Wade Oval Drive, University Circle
Cleveland, OH 44106 | 216.231-4600