- A beautiful word, all full of circles and soft shapes as the letters come together. The oological collection is full of beautiful shapes and colors that all come together in bins full of small, smaller and the very smallest of blue, white, black speckled and brown spotted bird eggs.
The objects are wonderful, but they were selected to pay a very small tribute to Mary Jane Dockeray, who joined the museum right out of Michigan State College in the fall of 1949. She was brought in by Director Frank DuMond to be a full-time Nature Lecturer and she found herself creating a program that had her talking to four schools a day. She understood the beauty and importance of nature and shared her love of the natural world with school children all over the area.
Eggs are symbols of beginnings; of things to come; of wonder and anticipation. Mary Jane Dockeray took the opportunity to begin her career with the Public Museum and grow it into a way of sharing her love of nature with school children. She was then given the opportunity to start Blandford Nature Center and took a 10 acre parcel of land and eventually grew it to 143 acres by the time she retired in 1989. She has enlightened children and families to the magic of the natural world over many years of service. Thanks to her dedication to the sharing and spreading of knowledge and curiosity, everyone who sees these collections or experiences nature – either learning to tap a sugar maple or identifying mushrooms in the wild – have been gifted a perfect egg of knowledge to nurture and grow for themselves.
Lee Davis is a designer and teacher in Grand Rapids who is inspired by the ability of one woman to touch so many different lives.