Washington, D.C., April 16, 1885
We are in receipt every few days from various menageries and zoological gardens, of animals that have died of some disease; some of them sent with the understanding that a report will be made of the causes of death. Learning from you that you propose to make a collection of soft parts of animals for the purposes of comparative anatomical study, I beg to say that it will give me much pleasure to transfer the carcasses, as they come to hand, to the Army Medical Museum, if you will cause to be furnished on each occasion a report of the post mortem, for transmission to the donors. I understand that the Museum is making preparations for permanent presentations of specimens to illustrate the comparative anatomy of various organs, and in this event the National Museum will abandon its previous intention of making such collection; and will turn over a large amount of material already in store, as it is not desirable to have a duplicate.
Dr. J. S. Billings,
Army Medical Museum,