Daniel Lewis is a research professor of history at Claremont Graduate University, and the full-time Dibner Senior Curator of the History of Science & Technology at the Huntington Library in San Marino, California. His research interests include environmental history, the history of science, archival studies, and rare book and manuscript curatorship.
Lewis received his BA in English/Writing from the University of Redlands, and his MA and PhD in History from the University of California, Riverside. He has taught courses at USC, UCLA, the Art Center College of Design, and CGU, where he has taught since 2005. Most recently, he is also on the faculty at the California Institute of Technology, where he teaches courses in environmental history.
His career working in libraries and archival settings has included stints at the Corporate Archivist and company historian for the Los Angeles Times. In addition to these positions, Lewis has published several poems, many articles, and a number of books and has been on broadcast programs on NPR and PBS. In 2015, he was a senior fellow at the Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society in Munich, Germany.
His exhibit at the Huntington Library, Beautiful Science: Ideas that Changed the World, is a permanent exhibit in the Huntington’s Dibner Hall. The exhibit won the American Association of Museums’ Grand Prize for Excellence in Exhibitions in 2009 as the best exhibit in America. It illustrates the beauty of science in a historical context, and is arranged around four subject areas: Astronomy, Natural History, Medicine, and Light.
Lewis’ new project is a global history of biodiversity, taking a continent-by-continent approach to the topic.
Belonging on an Island: Birds, Extinction and Evolution in Hawaii. Yale University Press, 2018.
The Feathery Tribe: Robert Ridgway and the Modern Study of Birds. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2012.
Iron Horse Imperialism: The Southern Pacific of Mexico, 1880–1951. Tempe, AZ: University of Arizona Press, 2007.
Co-authored with Ronald Brashear. Star Struck: One Thousand Years of the Art & Science of Astronomy. Seattle, WA: University of Washington Press, 2001.
Introduction to Archival Studies
Research Methods in the Archive