Happy Birthday, Rachel Carson!

Rachel Carson

Today is the 107th birthday of Rachel Carson. Unfortunately she died too young, at only 56 years old, of cancer. Ironically one of her greatest accomplishments was helping to ban agricultural use the synthetic pesticide DDT, which was later discovered to be linked to breast cancer. Her accomplishments are too numerous to describe in this short blog, but she is probably best known for her 1962 book Silent Spring, which brought environmental awareness to a large number of Americans and led to a ban on DDT and other pesticides. She basically questioned the logic of releasing large amounts of chemicals into the environment without an understanding of their effects on human health and on the ecosystem. This soft-spoken woman took on fierce opposition from the chemical companies as well as personal attacks to help spark the national environmental movement. Her work is credited with helping to create the Environmental Protection Agency.

Read more about Rachel here.

Note that Rachel Carson will be featured as one of the "Individuals Making a Difference" as part of our upcoming exhibit "Going, Going, GONE? Endangered and Extinct Species"! This exhibit opens July 2nd, 2014 at the Ohio Historical Center.

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