The tradition of putting body parts on display is almost as old as religion itself. Reliquaries containing the hands, feet, teeth, and other parts of holy people have been touted around the globe for thousands of years. But 20th-century cultural icons and ancient historical figures? Yeah, those get around too.
While some are proudly on display, many are decidedly better hidden. But with careful planning and a discerning eye, there are some pretty incredible body parts to be seen out there. You just have to know where to look.
Einstein's Brain, University Medical Center, Princeton, New Jersey
All of us have one, some are a lot more developed than others, and Einstein's was incredible. Yep! We're talking about brains.
When Einstein died in 1955, his brain was removed by Thomas Harvey, a doctor working in the Princeton Hospital in New Jersey where the scientist passed away. Harvey thought that careful study of Einstein's brain would help him figure out what made the guy so gosh darn smart. Harvey was not granted permission to remove Einstein's brain, but he did it anyway, which landed him in some pretty hot water. And after Harvey became frighteningly obsessed with the brain and refused to relinquish possession of the specimen, he was fired from the Princeton Hospital and left in shame. But not before stealing the brain.
Harvey left New Jersey and went on a wild scientist goose chase. He traveled to any research facility or lab that agreed to perform tests on the brain. And here's where things really get weird: after a divorce and a downward spiral that brought him across the Midwest, Harvey ended up losing his medical license. His tragic tale ends with a cross-country road trip intended to return Einstein's brain to his granddaughter, only for her to tell him she didn't want it. 40 years later, Harvey returned the brain, in pieces, to the pathology lab in Princeton.
The bits of brain are somewhere in the Princeton Hospital, although we're not sure exactly where. Anyone got any insider info? We'd love to know.