Bear In Mind: The Story of the California Grizzly
February 5, 2009

Grizzly Bear Rag, sheet music
Merced County Courthouse Museum will open a new exhibit entitled, “Bear In Mind: The Story of the California Grizzly,” on Thursday, February 5. This exhibit is based on the Heyday Books publication, Bear in Mind: The California Grizzly by Susan Snyder.
Over the centuries, the relationship that Californians have had with the grizzly bear is one of dualities – expressed in fear and fascination. The California grizzly possessed characteristics that we hold dear: independence, adaptability, resourcefulness, intelligence, and strong maternal care. Yet human interaction with the bears was misguided, intolerant, and violent. Although now extinct in the state, the grizzly has long been a central character in California’s history. It is through stories, artifacts, striking images, and hands-on activities that the “Bear In Mind” exhibit provides an in-depth look at the history and science of California’s most revered and feared animals.
At the opening reception, a PBS Nature series “Bears” will be shown at 6:00 p.m. This program is about the grizzly hunting for salmon following the six month hibernation. Breathtaking beauty of the Alaska wilderness offers an insightful look at the giant loners. The event is free to the public. For more information, please contact the museum office at (209) 723-2401.
Bear Brand Washington Navel, fruit crate label
The “Bear In Mind: The Story of the California Grizzly” exhibition is produced and toured by the California Exhibition Resources Alliance (CERA). The exhibition was developed in concert with The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley and Heyday Books. CERA is a network of professionally operated museums and cultural organizations that collaborate to create and tour smaller, affordable, high quality exhibitions that enhance civic engagement and human understanding. CERA is supported by generous grants from the James Irvine Foundation, the William Randolph Hearst Foundation, and the California Council for the Humanities, with additional support for this exhibition was provided by the Bank of the West.

Grizzly bear fishing, C Hart Merriam Pictorial Collection, The Bancroft Library
Grizzly bear fishing, C Hart Merriam Pictorial Collection, The Bancroft Library