SIU thanks alumnus Jeffery Leving ’74 for donating hundreds of rare naturalist paintings to Morris Library

Jeffery Leving ’74 recently donated hundreds of rare naturalist paintings to Morris Library. The collection includes 295  Audubon bird paintings from the Birds of America octavo edition; 67 mammals from the Quadrupeds of North America, octavo ed.; and 13 Redouté prints of flowers from the lily family.

Dean John Pollitz shares that when the collection of boxes arrived and he started opening them, he was overwhelmed with Leving’s generosity.

“This collection is so well suited to our university because we have such a strong relationship with nature. We are surrounded by the Shawnee National Forest, we are in the center of the Mississippi Flyway, and we are in the midst of the land that Audubon roamed finding his birds to draw.”

“This donation is a reflection of how our alumni hold this place dear. Jeffery and I attended SIU at a very special time and our lives were molded by those years. I am thrilled that someone as successful as Leving wants to give back to SIU,” Pollitz said.

The collection will be on display at the library beginning April 23 during Earth Week.


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