Using visual aids in the instruction of biology is a technique with deep roots. Collections of historical images, many now in the public domain, are currently being digitized and made available online by several academic and commercial organizations. Unfortunately, the original indexes, guides, and catalogs for the materials are frequently inadequate, and in some instances border on the fraudulent. Careful examination of these archives by the skilled eyes of present-day biology educators is needed to uncover historical imagery that will contribute valuable information useful for contextualizing contemporary topics in the classroom.

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