TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- When Albert Einstein died, doctors harvested his brain, took multiple photographs from many angles, and cut the rest of his brain in 240 parts for research. Then, the doctors divided up the records.
That's where the story ended until last year.
Dr. Dean Falk, an anthropologist at Florida State University and a research partner, began their detective work 13 months ago, and uncovered 14 of the missing photographs in a box held by the estate of a doctor. The family then donated the the pictures to the National Museum of Health and Medicine.
On Friday, Falk released the first-ever study of Einstein's brain in one piece.
"The other studies looked at parts - very limited parts of the brain - but this is the first time all of these materials have been available."
Falk compared the grooves of Einstein's brain to 85 other men, and found the front and left side, which control memory, imagination and movement, to be unusually large and connected.
"This is exactly the part of the brain one would expect to imagine yourself riding along next to a beam of light as Einstein did."
While she can only speculate, Falk says her discovery might explain why Einstein described his thinking as "muscular." Until the other missing evidence is found, she can't know for sure.
"I really hope that some individuals that have still some of the slides and the chunks of the brain will see fit to donate them to this collection. It's hard to know if Einstein came back today, how he would feel about this, but, you know, I suspect he'd be ok with it."