Shell Museum’s Lecture Series Kicks Off With Award-Winning Journalist

provided to The Santiva Chronicle

Cynthia Barnett

Based on the positive response to its 2021 lecture series, the Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum has launched an exciting lineup of speakers for its 2022 series. The first talk will feature award-winning environmental journalist Cynthia Barnett. She will discuss her newly-released book, The Sound of the Sea: Seashells and the Fate of the Oceans, at 5:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 21 at the Museum, 3075 Sanibel Captiva Rd.

In this special program for the National Shell Museum, where the idea for The Sound of the Sea: Seashells and the Fate of the Oceans was born, Barnett will give an inside look on her six-year journey researching the profound relationship between humans and seashells. Traveling from Florida to the Bahamas to the Maldives, West Africa, and beyond, Barnett explores the ancient history of shells as global currency, their use as religious and luxury objects, and the rarely appreciated but remarkable creatures that make them.

“Cynthia Barnett is an exceptional writer and great friend to the Museum,” said National Shell Museum Executive Director Sam Ankerson. “Among the ways her new book breaks ground is as an illumination of the range of ways shells and mollusks interact with human culture and history. We’re thrilled she’ll be here.”

Cost to attend the lecture is $10 per person (or FREE for Museum Members, memberships to be confirmed upon registration). Book sale and book signing will follow the talk. Refreshments, wine, beer, and snacks are included with event admission. Registration required at

About the Museum: The Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum is a Natural History Museum, and the only accredited museum in the United States with a primary focus on shells and mollusks. Its mission is to use exceptional collections, aquariums, programs, experiences, and science to be the nation’s leading museum in the conservation, preservation, interpretation, and celebration of shells, the mollusks that create them, and their ecosystems. Permanent exhibitions on view include the Great Hall of Shells which displays highlights of the Museum’s collection of some 550,000 shells, as well as the Beyond Shells living gallery of aquariums and over 50 species of marine life. For more information on the Museum, please visit or call (239) 395-2233.

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