January 16, 1992 |
To find the tarantulas and roaches, look for a huge, ugly iguana and a rattlesnake in a plate-glass window on Frankford Avenue. The sign on the large old building in the Holmesburg section says, "Steve's Bug Off. " It's the office of exterminator Steve Kanya. And it's the site of "The Insectarium," a major bug museum and Philadelphia's newest educational and tourist attraction. Don't scoff. Yesterday's opening was covered not only by the local press; the prestigious New York Times dispatched a correspondent.
May 26, 1997 |
The rundown brick manse casts its shadow on a wooded backstreet, where it has served as a center for juvenile delinquents and now a group home for the mentally disabled. Most people don't come here unless they have to. Cathy Nelson can't stay away. Here, the spirits of her ancestors are alive and calling, slaves who stopped at this house and others like it during the dangerous scramble north to freedom. With their whispers to prod her, where some see a shuttered tower, Nelson sees a crucial lookout post.
August 20, 1992 |
In colonial times, Burlington County excelled in a lot of endeavors, but the county was noted especially for its clocks. From the mid-18th to the mid-19th century, the area boasted of 18 clockmakers, said Rhett Pernot, executive director of the Burlington County Historical Society. Unfortunately, the society hasn't had the right place to display the nearly 10 county-made clocks that it owns - or the dozens of quilts, samplers, furniture and other items the society has accumulated since 1915, the year it was founded.
July 11, 1999 |
The Gloucester City Historical Society's tiny new museum on King Street tells more than 300 years of the city's history through pictures. There are a few interesting artifacts sprinkled throughout, but the exhibit is dominated by photographs, drawings and paintings culled from the attics of longtime residents or discovered in dusty boxes that had been stored in a small room on the third floor of the municipal building. "We're not prepared for artifacts," said Joan Corcoran, president of the Gloucester City Historical Society.
October 16, 2002 |
After pocketing $103 million in federal, state and local grants to finance their new museum, the leaders of Philadelphia's National Constitution Center have decided to exclude federal, state and local elected officials from serving on the board of directors. John C. Bogle, the former Vanguard Group head who chairs the center's 35-member board, said that with the Constitution museum set to open July 4 on Independence Mall, the intent of the board was "to make an institution that's above politics.
December 21, 2005 |
In 1976, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania sold Valley Forge State Park to the federal government for $1. Now the state may want it back. Angry over inadequate maintenance and the federal government's failure to approve plans for a new museum at Valley Forge National Historical Park, Gov. Rendell wrote to Interior Secretary Gale Norton last week offering a do-over. If the United States "is unwilling or unable to protect and preserve Valley Forge . . . the commonwealth is prepared to accept that responsibility," Rendell wrote.
August 17, 2003 |
Walking into the Dia Foundation's new museum on the east bank of the Hudson River is initially startling because of its scale, but then the experience becomes exhilarating. The place is cavernous. At 292,000 square feet - 240,000 of that devoted to display galleries - it's one of the largest museums of contemporary art in the world. It's also the latest example of an obsolete factory transformed into a temple of culture. As you step into the galleries from a tiny vestibule, the space opens up like a landscape.
March 18, 2012 |
The CIA couldn't do a better stealth job than the Barnes Foundation. With the new Barnes museum set to open in mere weeks, the foundation appears to have carried out much of the complex job - almost industrial in its scale, but oh so delicate in its handling - of packing up and moving billions of dollars in art objects from the suburban Main Line to a new home on the Parkway. Like any proper covert operation, this one is being undertaken on a need-to-know basis, and those in the know aren't talking.
July 23, 2012 |
For the Philadelphia tourism industry, the consummation devoutly to be wished has arrived at last. The reopening of the Rodin Museum last weekend, its original character sensitively restored, completes the longed-for "museum mile" along the Parkway that tourism promoters hope will prove to be an irresistible magnet for the culturally motivated. The Rodin, the new museum of the Barnes Foundation next door, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art a few blocks west certainly create a destination worth a special journey, as the Michelin guides would put it. The question now is whether this new synergy will benefit all three museums, particularly the Rodin.
May 28, 2012 |
GETTYSBURG — For decades the electric map show was as much a part of the Gettysburg National Military Park experience as the battlefield itself. Generations of visitors — among them President Dwight D. Eisenhower and British Field Marshall Sir Bernard Law Montgomery — took a 20-minute trip back in time to witness the progression of Union and Confederate troops over the course of the three-day battle in July 1863. There was no Disney animation, no interactive display.