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  • Category:
    History
  • Document type:
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    Undergraduate
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New York City as Revealed By the Barnum Museum

Currently, a lot of research has been done on the New York City. It has been revealed that this is the most famous city in the United States of America as well as the entire world. However, little has been done on places that have contributed towards the history of this popular city in the world. It is evident that the New York City is the center of the New York Metropolitan Region. As a result, the city is so influential in the universal commerce, finance, the media, cultural practices, architectural design and art, technological advancement, and educational research among other issues. The extent to which the city holds a huge number of people has attracted research into the reasons behind its development and success. This paper focuses part on the development of the New York City especially as revealed by the development of the Barnum Museum (Neil, 1973, pg 45).

The Barnum Museum, popularly known as the Barnum’s American Museum, is a universal tourist attraction center located in the heart of the New York City. The museum is operated under the patronage of the famous showman P.T. Barnum and his associate initially called John Scudder. Before the partnership, the museum was called Scudder’s American Museum. The Museum is mainly concerned about, general life, language, literary art, historical background and architecture of the heterogeneous population of the antebellum American city (Neil, 1973, pg 63). The focus of the center is especially on the people of the New York City. The museum therefore brings out a clear picture of how the New York City is rich in cultural practices, economic disposition as well as development in matters of language. The Barnum Museum has been long known by researchers and historians as an imperative center in the growth of the 19th century urban culture from multiple cultural practices of people from different cultural practices.

When the museum was started, admission was only twenty five cents in which tourists perceived a continuously transforming series of attractions. This ranged from the patchwork Fejee Mermaid to the minute and coherent Tom Thumb (Vitale, 2006, pg 69). In addition, the museum added value to the educational sector. This encompassed natural history in the center’s menageries, aquaria as well as taxidermy shows; background in its art paintings, wax pictures, and memorabilia which depicted the temperance reform and Shakespearean poetry.

As a premonition of the American economic amusement, the museum was the first place in New York City to amalgamate sensational recreation and garish show having training and value empowerment. Following this diversity in services rendered in the museum, a new audience that included increasingly heterogeneous populace of antebellum American city was drawn. At this place, all races, gender, and class culture were incorporated to showcase the future of New York City (Saxon, 1989, pg 41).

The Map of Barnum Museum

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From New York City map, the Barnum Museum is located on the Main Street. New York, NY 820. Bridgeport, CT 06604-4912, United States. The museum’s strategic position provides a better access by the outside world from the see.

Beyond the general description of and historical background of Barnum Museum, it reveals the aspect of tourism in the New York City (Bluford, 1997, pg 102). The museum attracts tourists from all over the world who come to explore the cultural practices of immigrants, Native Americans among other races particularly in their language development. This happened long before the coming of the first European settlers in the region where the current New York City rests. The Barnum Museum therefore preserves exciting historical background of the Native Americans, immigrants and other individuals in terms of their cultural practices, language and civilization. The Barnum Museum therefore has its headquarters in the Broadway and Ann Street in New York City which honors the natives’ life skills, literature, as well as art.

As a result of a wide range of tourist attraction facilities in the museum, it is imperative to visit such destinations for family and personal recreation (Phineas, 1981, pg 17). The museum has therefore contributed to the economic development of the region surrounding it in New York City. This is attributed to the corporate social responsibility that the museum serves to the local community within the city. The Beaux-Art designed building itself is a tourist attraction center. As it is indicated in the figure below, the structure has a huge columned exterior, which reflects the Greek temple architectural design. As a mater of fact, the museum indicated that most of the constructions done within the New York City incorporated the ancient Greek and Roman architectural designs which are as a result of the ancient Egyptian architecture.

However, evidenced by the museum, the New York City structures are technologically advanced in terms of column used for reinforcement of the storey building through the use of steel and concrete. However, there are signs of the Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian architectural styles in the construction of the New York City structures. The interior of the museum is especially fascinating having well furnished white marble floors as well as walls and its well painted ceiling. Tourists visiting this museum are able to enjoy up to 20,000 square feet of expansive space. The positioning of the museum in a semicircle around a rotunda gives a true picture of the overhead view of the New York City (Phineas, 2002, pg 127).

Date of Submission: XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX 1The exterior view of the American Indian Museum

The Barnum Museum seen from outside reveals advanced architectural designs through the use of columns and arches that have been strengthened using concrete as opposed to the ancient Greek and Roman architecture that used wooden materials for columns (Bluford, 1997, pg 100). This image shows the appearance the Barnum Museum from the northern side of the New York City. This is an extremely attractive view that draws keen interest in tourists from all over the universe. It shows that the New York City is an educational center in terms of advanced technology in building and construction.

On the contrary, the Barnum Museum reveals that the New York City is a busy city within the United States of America (William, 1992, pg 55). This is seen in the way the museum carries out its schedules. In spite of the fact that the museum occupies just two floors, collections within the museum are large and fascinating to the extent that visitors have to set aside at least four hours of their visiting day to view all that this museum provides about the Native American people as well as immigrants in the region. The material is extensively made up of text which forms exciting reading but has to be considered during time allocation in visiting the museum. It is through such written material that all cultural practices of the people are presented (Philip, Kunhardt, Philip & Peter, 1995, pg 99). The museum has been used to bring out the development of art culture in terms of music and written literature in the New York City. Industry in the residents of the city is well brought out when their economic activities are shown in the museum.

Conclusion

The New York City is one of the most prominent cities in the world. It is resided by a wide range of people from different parts of the world due to its economic and cultural richness. This has attracted a lot of research in the foundations of the city. However little has been done on areas that have greatly contributed to the growth of this city (Andrea, 1997, pg 76). This paper however has concerned itself with the Barnum Museum as one of the main pillars in reflecting the activities that happen within the New York City. It has been noted that as a result of the development of Barnum Museum, the culture of Native Americans and other immigrants has been preserved to serve as a tourist attraction facility. The museum therefore makes the New York City a tourist attraction center attributed to the heterogeneous population of the antebellum American city.

Reference:

Andrea, S.D. 1997. Weird and Wonderful: The Dime Museum in America. New York: New York University Press.

Bluford, A. 1997. All Things to All People’: P. T. Barnum in American Culture in E Pluribus Barnum: The Great Showman and the Making of U.S. Popular Culture. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.

Neil, H. 1973. Humbug: The Art of P.T. Barnum. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Philip, B., Kunhardt, Jr., Philip, B. & Peter, W. 1995. P. T. Barnum: America’s Greatest Showman. New York: Alfred A. Knopf.

Phineas, T. 2002. Barnum: The Life of P. T. Barnum, Written by Himself. New York: Redfield.

Phineas, T. 1981. Barnum: Struggles and Triumphs or, Forty Years’ Recollections of P. T. Barnum Written by Himself. Harmondsworth: Penguin.

Saxon, A. H. 1989. P. T. Barnum: The Legend and the Man. New York: Columbia University Press.

Saxon, A. H. 1983. Selected Letters of P. T. Barnum. New York: Columbia University Press.

Tchen, J. 2001. New York Before Chinatown: Orientalism and the Shaping of American Culture, 1776-1882. New York: JHU Press.

Vitale, J. 2006. There’s a customer born every minute: P.T. Barnum’s amazing 10 «rings of power» for creating fame, fortune, and a business empire today-guaranteed! New York: John Wiley and Sons.

William, T. 1992. Mermaids, Mummies, and Mastodons: The Emergence of the American Museum. Washington, D.C.: American Association of Museums.