Treasures of New York: American Museum of Natural History


>>>THIS IS THE LARGEST DAY CARE
CENTER IN THE WORLD. IT’S WONDERFUL THE PLACE IS
CRAWLING WITH CHILDREN.>>WHERE ELSE COULD YOU GET
CLOSE TO A MOOSE LIKE THIS.>>ONLY IN A WORLD RENOWNED
INSTITUTION DEDICATED TO KNOWLEDGE, THE NATURAL WORLD AND
THE UNIVERSE.>>WE HAVE A GREAT LIBRARY OF
LIFE ON EARTH IN OUR COLLECTION.>>A PLACE WHERE THE AMERICAN
CONSERVATION MOVEMENT WAS SPEARHEADED BY A GREAT PATRON.>>THE MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY
IS LIKE THE HARVARD OF THE NATURAL WORLD.>>HOME TO THE HABITAT DIARAMA.>>DIARAMAS ARE THE LIFE BLOOD
OF THE MUSEUM.>>STEP INSIDE THE TIME CAPSULES
WITH US.>>THE FIRST TIME I STEPPED
INSIDE, I WAS TRANSCENDED.>>IT’S A TOY STORE. IT’S A FUN HOUSE.>>THIS PROGRAM WAS MADE POSZ BY
WITH THE GENEROUS SUPPORT OF — NOW FROM THE MUSEUM OF NATURAL
HISTORY, HERE IS TOM BROKAW.>>>FOR ALMOST 150 YEARS, THE
NATURAL MUSEUM HAS BEEN A GIFT TO THE WORLD. IT IS A TREASURE. IT IS THE STORY OF LIFE ITSELF. WITHIN THESE HALLS ARE
SPECIMENS. IT CONTAINS THE LARGEST
COLLECTION OF DINOSAUR BONES OF ANY PLACE ON EARTH. IN EVERY NOOK AND CRANNY. I LIKED TO BRING MY CHILDREN AND
NOW MY GRANDCHILDREN HERE SO THEY CAN PRESS THEIR FACE
AGAINST THE GREAT DIARAMAS. OUR 26th PRESIDENT, THEODORE
ROOSEVELT JR.’S LEGACY IS TIED TO THIS MUSEUM. HE WROTE, WE ARE NOT BUILDING
THIS COUNTRY OF OURS FOR A DAY, IT IS THE LAST THROUGH THE AGES. SO COME ALONG NOW ON THE
ULTIMATE FIELD TRIP AS WE REIMAGINE TEDDY ROOSEVELT AND
REDISCOVER THIS TREASURE OF NEW YORK CITY AND THE WORLD, THE
AMERICAN MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY. THESE SECOND GRADERS ARE
EMBARKING ON AN EXHIBITION.>>ARE YOU EXCITED TO BE HERE AT
THE MUSEUM TODAY?>>I THINK WE ARE GOING TO HAVE
A LOT OF FUN.>>YEAH.>>IT’S WONDERFUL THE PLACE IS
CRAWLING WITH CHILDREN. I LIVED NEAR IT FOR A LONG TIME. I REMEMBER ON A RAINY SATURDAY,
ONE SAYING, YOU KNOW, THIS IS THE LARGEST DAY CARE CENTER IN
THE WORLD. THERE MUST HAVE BEEN HUNDREDS OF
PEOPLE WITH BABY STROLLERS GOING THROUGH THE EXHIBITS.>>WHY DON’T YOU FOLLOW ME.>>HEADED INTO THE DARKNESS TO
EXPLORE BEAVERS AND BEARS.>>EVEN ON A SUNNY DAY, IT’S
VERY CROWDED WITH KIDS. IT’S A WONDERFUL THING. IT’S WHAT’S SUPPOSED TO HAPPEN
WHEN A GREAT LANDMARK IS USED AND CONNECTED TODAYLY LIFE. IT’S NOT JUST A THING.>>THE AMERICAN MUSEUM OF
NATURAL HISTORY, THE LARGEST SUCH MUSEUM IN THE WORLD IS ALSO
ONE OF THE WORLD’S MOST RESPREKTED SCIENTIFIC
INSTITUTIONS SPANNING FOUR SQUARE CITY BLOCKS, COMPRISED OF
EXHIBITION HALLS, IT HOUSES 32 MILLION SPECIMENS AND ARTIFACTS
INCLUDING DINOSAUR SKELETONS, MINERALS AND METEORITES,
JELLYFISH, BUTTERFLIES AND A 94 FOOT BLUE WHALE. IT IS ONE OF NEW YORK CITY’S
MOST BELOVED PLACES. ALMOST EVERYONE WHO GREW UP IN
THE NEW YORK CITY AREA REMEMBERS THEIR FIRST TRIP HERE. WHAT VISITOR CAN FORGET THAT
FIRST ENCOUNTER WITH T-REX OR THIS EIGHT FOOT BROWN BEAR.>>HOW ABOUT THE BIG CLAWS? I THINK THAT’S USEFUL FOR
GETTING FOOD, RUNNING UP HILLS.>>IT IS A 1.6 MILLION SQUARE
FOOT TREASURE TROEF.>>WE HAVE THIS LIVE ON EARTH IN
OUR COLLECTION.>>IT IS PERHAPS THE NOISIEST
LIBRARY IN NEW YORK.>>EVERYONE TAKE ONE STEP BACK. I NEED ALL THE ROOM I CAN GET.>>AWESOME!>>SO, RAISE YOUR HAND IF YOU
KNOW WHAT PART OF THE BEAR THIS>>WOW!>>IT’S A GREAT INTELLECTUAL TOY
STORE, IF YOU THINK ABOUT IT. IS. IT’S A FUNHOUSE.>>OVER THE PAST FEW YEARS, THE
AMERICAN MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY AND INSTITUTION DEVOTED
TO COLLECTING, STUDYING AND CONSERVING NATURE HAS TAKEN BOLD
STEPS TO CONSERVE AND MODERNIZE ITSELF WITH THE RESTORATION OF
THE HALL OF MAMMALS AND THE MONUMENT TO THE MAN CONSIDERED
THE PATRIARCH OF THE MUSEUM. DURING THE NEXT HOUR, WE GO
BEHIND THE GLASS TO WITNESS THE RESTORATION OF THESE ICONIC
DIARAMAS. WE GO BEHIND THE SCENES FOR A
LOOK AT THE SPECIMEN’S RARELY SEEN BY THE PUBLIC. AND WE’LL INTRODUCE YOU TO THE
AMERICAN PRESIDENT WHO PLAYED AN INVALUABLE ROLE IN THE MUSEUM’S
EARLY DAYS, WHOSE VISION LIVES ON IN THESE HALLS.>>WHY DO WE HAVE A STATUE OF A
PRESIDENT, PRESIDENT ROOSEVELT, WHY DO WE HAVE HIS STATUE IN A
SCIENCE MUSEUM? WHY IS HE IN A SCIENCE MUSEUM?>>HE WAS A NATURALIST.>>VERY GOOD. HE WAS A NATURALIST. HE WAS A SCIENTIST. HE LOVED EXPLORING NATURE LIKE
I’M SURE YOU DO.>>AS THESE KIDS ALREADY SEEM TO
KNOW, THE SOUL OF THE INSTITUTION IS INSEPARABLE FROM
ONE OF THE EARLIEST SUPPORTERS, THEODORE ROOSEVELT.>>THEODORE ROOSEVELT, 26th
PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES>>THAT IS THE 20th CENTURY FOX
MOVIE “NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM.” OF AMERICA. THE REAL THEODORE ROOSEVELT WAS
A NATURALIST, A COLLECTOR, A TAXIDERMIST, A WRITER, EXPLORER,
POLITICIAN AND OUR 26th PRESIDENT. EARLY AND AVID PATRON. HE IS FONDLY REFERRED TO AS OUR
FIRST CONSERVATION PRESIDENT.>>WE HAVE NEVER HAD SOMEBODY
LIKE THAT IN THE WHITE HOUSE WHOSE GREAT PASSION WAS THE
NATURAL WORLD. IN AN ERA WHERE PEOPLE WERE
STILL PRIMITIVE IN UNDERSTANDING THE PLANET, ROOSEVELT SAW EARTH
AS ONE PULSING, BIOLOGICAL ORGANISM THAT ALL THE RIVERS AND
THE SEAS WERE CONNECTED INTO ONE>>BORN TO A WEALTHY FAMILY IN
MANHATTAN, TEDDY’S PARENTS WERE THING. THEODORE ROOSEVELT SR. AND MIMI. TEDDY JR. WAS FREQUENTLY HOUSE
BOUND.>>THERE ARE NO PICTURES OF
THEODORE ROOSEVELT AT THE AGE OF 3 OR SO. IF THERE WERE, WE WOULD PROBABLY
SEE A FRIGHTENING INVALID OF A AT THE AGE OF 3, HIS DOCTORS
DIAGNOSED HE WOULD BE UNABLE TO BOY. LIVE LONG. FINALLY, HE GOT TO AGE 6 OR 7
WHEN HE BEGAN TO READ.>>HE LOVED ADVENTURE STORIES
ABOUT GREAT ANIMALS.>>THIS LITTLE BOY USED TO LUG
AROUND A GIGANTIC BOOK OF MISSIONARY TRAVELS BY DAVID
LIVINGSTON.>>ACCOUNTS OF LIVINGSTON’S
EXOTIC AND FAR AWAY ADVENTURES IN AFRICA. EXCITING TALES FILLED WITH
DISCOVERY AND DANGER.>>THAT’S WHEN HIS FASCINATION
WITH LIVING ANIMALS BEGAN. SOMEHOW, IT’S A COMPLIMENT TO
HIS WEEDY, PHYSICAL HE FANTASIZED, LIFE OF
ADVENTURE, LIFE IN THE OUTDOORS. CONSTITUTION. HIS LOVE OF NATURE WAS VERY MUCH
A DESIRE TO ESCAPE THE NARROWNESS OF HIS BACKGROUND AND
THE NARROWNESS OF HIS CHEST AND THE NARROWNESS OF HIS ILL
HEALTH.>>TEDDY BECAME AN AVID
COLLECTOR OF ANIMALS, BIRDS, HE LEARNED THE BASICS OF
TAXIDERIY TO PRESERVE THEM ALL. BUGS.>>MANY SPECIMENS, BIRDS AND
ANIMALS. SOME OF THEM HE STUFFED WITH
REMARKABLE SKILL. HE DREW THEM, WROTE ABOUT THEM.>>IN HIS NOTEBOOKS, HE LOGGED
EVERY BIT OF HIS COLLECTION. BY THE AGE OF 9, TEDDY PUBLISHED
THE NATURE OF INSECTS AND HIS>>AS A BOY, HE ACTUALLY CREATED
WHAT HE CALLED THE ROOSEVELT COLLECTION GREW. MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY.>>CREATED IN HIS BEDROOM IN HIS
HOME. IT WAS IN 1869 THE CHARTER WOULD
BE SIGNED.>>THIS IS THE ACTUAL CHARTER OR
COPY OF THE CHARTER TO THE MUSEUM DATED APRIL 16th, 1869. ONE OF THE ORIGINAL FOUNDERS OF
THE MUSEUM WAS THEODORE ROOSEVELT SR., THE FATHER OF THE
SENATOR.>>YOU HAVE THE LEADERS IN NEW
YORK CITY AT THAT TIME. THEY WANT A GREAT MUSEUM OF
NATURAL HISTORY IN THE CITY OF NEW YORK JUST AS THERE IS ONE IN
LONDON. THEY CONCEIVE OF IT BROADLY AND
WITH GREAT INHIBITION.>>IT WOULD BECOME YOUNG TEDDY’S
PLAYGROUND.>>HE WOULD COME DOWN HERE,
WONDER AROUND, STUDY. HE SAW THE AMERICAN MUSEUM OF
NATURAL HISTORY AS THE HARVARD OF THE NATURAL WORLD.>>THE MUSEUM ENCOURAGED IN
TEDDY A LIFELONG DEVOTION TO THE INSTITUTION AND A PERSONAL
PASSION FOR EXPLORATION AND CONSERVATION. ROOSEVELT’S LEGACY WOULD EXTEND
WELL BEYOND THE MUSEUM AND NEW YORK TO ALL CORNERS OF AMERICA. AND ULTIMATELY TO THE WHITE
HOUSE. THE AMERICAN MUSEUM OF NATURAL
HISTORY WAS FIRST LOCATED IN 1869 IN A SECTION OF THE ARSENAL
BUILDING ON FIFTH AVENUE. TWO YEARS LATER, THE CITY OF NEW
YORK OFFERED THE MUSEUM A 19 ACRE PARCEL OF LAND ON
MANHATTAN’S UNDEVELOPED UPPER WEST SIDE FROM 77th TREAT TO
81st.>>THE SIGHT OF THE MUSEUM
ACTUALLY PREDATES CENTRAL PARK. IT’S AN ENORMOUS FOUR BLOCK LONG
SQUARE THAT ACTUALLY WAS ORIGINALLY CALLED MANHATTAN
SQUARE.>>DESIGNED BY ARCHITECTS, THE
MASTER PLAN WAS TO CREATE A SERIES OF BUILDINGS THAT WOULD
FILL THE ENTIRE TRUCK.>>IT WAS AN ENORMOUS BUILDING
WITH COURTYARDS AND MORE WINGS AND MORE COURTYARDS AND MORE
WINGS AND STILL THE BULK OF THAT ENORMOUS FOUR BLOCK SITE.>>IN 1874, PRESIDENT GRANT LAID
THE CORNER STONE FOR THE FIRST PHASE. THAT BUILDING OPENED TO THE
PUBLIC THREE YEARS LATER. PRESIDENT HAYES AND ROOSEVELT IN
ATTENDANCE. THE ORIGINAL BUILDING STILL
STANDS BUT OBSCURED BY NEWER WINGS. BUILT SLOWLY AND IN SECTIONS,
THE MUSEUM PLAN WAS CONTINUED WITH AN EXTENSION TO THE FIRST
BUILDING. A GRAND ENTRANCE ON WEST 77th
STREET. IN A STYLE WE CALL ROMANESQUE. KIND OF AMERICAN ADAPTATION OF
ROMANESQUE ARCHITECTURE.>>THE REST OF THE CASTLE WOULD
HAVE TO WAIT. THE 77th STREET ENTRANCE WAS
COMPLETED AT THE END OF THE 19th CENTURY, A TIME WHEN THE MUSEUM
WAS DEEP IN DEBT. WHEN THE TIME CAME TO RESUME
CONSTRUCTION, THE 20th CENTURY WAS WELL UNDER WAY AND TASTES
HAD CHANGED.>>THEY WERE NOT SURE THEY
WANTED TO BUILD IN THAT ARCHITECTURAL STYLE ANYMORE. IT FELT TOO ASSOCIATED, REALLY,
WITH THE 1880s, IN PARTICULAR. THE MUSEUM WANTED TO GO IN A
DIFFERENT DIRECTION.>>IN 1924, FIVE YEARS AFTER
THEODORE ROOSEVELT’S DEATH, THEY COMMISSIONED A MEMORIAL TO THE
LATE PRESIDENT. A NEW MUSE UM BUILDING WHICH
WOULD SERVE AS THE MAIN ENTRANCE ON CENTRAL PARK WEST. THE MANDATE, TO CREATE A
MONUMENT WORTHY OF THEODORE ROOSEVELT, THE MUSEUM’S GREATEST
PATRON.>>TO SYMBOLIZE THIS SCIENTIFIC
EDUCATIONAL OUTDOOR ASPECTS OF THEODORE ROOSEVELT’S LIFE. THE IDEALS, PURPOSES AND PLANS
OF THE MUSEUM TO WHICH THEODORE DEVOTED HIS LIFE.>>ROOSEVELT, THE BOY COLLECTOR
HAD GONE ON TO GREAT THINGS.>>IT WAS A GRAND PROJECT, A
GRAND ARCHITECTURAL PROJECT DEDICATED TO MEMORIALIZING A
GRAND PRESIDENT, THE GOVERNOR OF OUR STATE.>>TO FIND A GRAND ARCHITECT,
THE STATE HELD A DESIGN WHAT WE NOW SEE ON CENTRAL PARK
WEST MIGHT HAVE LOOKED LIKE COMPETITION. THIS. OR THIS.>>THE DESIGN WINNING THE
COMPETITION FOR THE SELECTION OF AN ARCHITECT FOR THE ROOSEVELT
MEMORIAL. THAT WAS JOHN –>>ARCHITECT JOHN RUSSELL WHO
LATER DESIGNED THE NATIONAL GALLERY AND THE JEFFERSON
MEMORIAL IN WASHINGTON, D.C.>>POPE IS A MAKER OF MONUMENTS
AS MUCH AS A MAKER OF BUILDINGS. HE LOVED, SORT OF GRAND AND
GRANDIOSITY.>>POPE’S WAS MONUMENTAL.>>IN ADDITION TO DESIGNING THE
BUILDING, POPE DESIGNED THE EXTENSIVE PLAZA, FROM THE
BUILDING, FACING CENTRAL PARK, WHICH IS REAMED WITH THE BAR
RELIEF OF WILDLIFE.>>THE BUILDING WAS FINALLY
FINISHED IN 1936. FOUR YEARS LATER WITH THE
INSTALLATION OF A BRONZE STATUE, THE THEODORE ROOSEVELT MEMORIAL
WAS COMPLETE. MEANWHILE ON 81st STREET,
ANOTHER WING OF THE MUSEUM WAS THE BUILDING THAT WAS DESIGNED
TO LOOK BEYOND EARTH AND INTO GOING UP. THE HEAVENS. THE HIDDEN PLANETARIUM DESIGNED
BY NEW YORK ARCHITECTS WAS NOT AS MONUMENTAL AS THE ROOSEVELT
MEMORIAL. IT HAS A MODERN DECK COE FEEL. IT WAS STILL EVOLVING.>>I THINK WE ARE LUCKY IT
EVOLVED OVER A LONG TIME IN SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT WAYS BECAUSE
IT BECOMES SORT OF LIKE A REAL CITY, ALMOST. YOU CAN FEEL THE LAYERS OF TIME
THERE.>>ALL THE WHILE THERE WAS AN
EVOLUTION OF ANOTHER SORT GOING ON INSIDE THE MUSEUM.>>FOR ME, DIARAMAS OF THIS ARE
THE LIFE BLOOD OF A NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM. THERE’S NO OTHER WAY OF PUTTING
IT.>>THE PERIOD BETWEEN 1880 AND
1930 IS CONSIDERED TO BE THE GOLDEN AGE OF EXPLORATION OF THE
MUSEUM. THE MUSEUM WAS AFFILIATED WITH
OVER 85 EXPEDITIONS.>>AT THAT TIME, REMEMBER, THERE
WERE NO JET AIRCRAFT. YOU HAD TO GO BY SHIP ACROSS THE
ATLANTIC OVER TO LONDON WHERE YOU OUTFITTED YOUR EXPEDITION
AND CRUISING FROM THERE, THROUGH THE MEDITERRANEAN, THROUGH THE
RED SEA, THE SUEZ CANAL AND THE EAST COAST OF AFRICA, LAND IN
MUMBASA. AT THAT TIME, THE RAILROAD
EXISTED TO NAIROBI. WHEN YOU WERE ON FOOT AND HIRED
PEOPLE TO CARRY YOUR EQUIPMENT.>>ON THESE EXPEDITIONS THAT
SOMETIMES LASTED YEARS, EXPLORERS COLLECTED THOUSANDS OF
SPECIMENS. THE ENTHUSIASTIC AMERICAN
AUDIENCE BACK HOME WAITED PATIENTLY TO SEE WHAT THEY HAD
FOUND.>>PEOPLE AT THAT TIME WERE
FASCINATED AS THEY ARE TODAY BY THE WORLD AROUND THEM. IN ORDER TO HAVE IT, IT HAD TO
BE COLLECTED AND BROUGHT HOME.>>BROUGHT HOME BECAUSE
SCIENTISTS HAD NO WAY TO RECORD WHAT THEY SAW IN THE FIELD.>>THERE WAS NO REALLY
SOPHISTICATED MOTION PICTURES OR WILDLIFE PHOTOGRAPHY OR
TELEPHOTO LENSES WHERE YOU COULD STUDY ANIMALS WITH FILM AND SHOW
THE FILM AND TEACH WITH IT.>>STILL, THERE WAS AN URGENCY
AMONG THE SCIENTISTS TO SHARE WHAT THEY KNEW.>>THE NATURAL HISTORY DIARAMAS
EMERGE OUT OF A TIME WHEN WE FIRST RECOGNIZED THAT WE ARE
LOSING THE WILDERNESS AND LOSING>>THE INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION WAS
DEPLETING NATURAL RESOURCES AND WILDLIFE. THREATENING WHOLE SPECIES OF
ANIMALS.>>THANKS TO THE LEVEL OF
DEVELOPMENT WE ENJOYED IN THE LAST SEVERAL CENTURIES, ONLY
SMALL RESTRICTED PLACES TO PRESERVE IT AT THE LEVEL YOU
WOULD WANT TO SEE.>>SCIENTISTS AT THE MUSEUM
DECIDED THE BEST WAY TO STIR UP POPULAR PASSION FOR SAVING
WILDLIFE AND THE ENVIRONMENT WAS TO RECREATE THEIR OWN PERSONAL
ENCOUNTERS WITH NATURE IN A REVOLUTIONARY FORM CALLED THE
DIARAMA. THE EARLIEST DIARAMAS WEREN’T
BIG AND CHARISMATIC LIKE THE ELEPHANTS AND LIONS, THEY WERE
SMALL, DOMESTIC BIRDS. FRANK CONSIDERED THE GREATEST
ORTOLOGIST OF HIS DAY INTRODUCED THE IDEA OF THE BIRD SPECIMENS
IN WHAT HE CALLED HABITAT>>CHAPMAN’S PRIMARY ATTEMPT IN
DEVELOPING THOSE EXHIBITS WAS TO GROUPS. PUT AN END TO PLUME HUNTING,
DESTROYING HABITATS, KILLING BIRDS FOR FASHION AND THE MEDIUM
TO TELL THAT STORY WAS THE>>THE FEATHERS WERE BEING USED
BY DRESS MAKERS IN WOMEN’S HATS DIARAMA. AND CLOTHING.>>HE USED THOSE EXHIBITS IN
FEATURED PLACES AND SPECIES THAT WERE ON THE BRINK OF EXTINCTION.>>CHAPMAN HAD PULL. HE APPEALED DIRECTLY TO HIS OLD
FRIEND AND MUSEUM CONNECTION, PRESIDENT THEODORE ROOSEVELT. IN 1903, PRESIDENT ROOSEVELT
VISITED THE ISLAND OFF FLORIDA THAT WAS THE HABITAT IN THE
MUSEUM. SEEING THE BIRDS AND THEIR
FRAGILE EXISTENCE, ROOSEVELT WAS MOVED TO CREATE THE PELICAN
ISLAND BIRD PRESERVATION. HE CREATED 50 MORE SUCH
PRESERVATIONS. IT WAS A TEACHING TOOL AND IT
WAS A HIT FOR THE PUBLIC. THE MUSEUM WANTED MORE. THE MUSEUM HIRED A TAXIDERMIST. HE WAS A SCULPTURE. WITH A UNIQUE SET OF TALENTS, HE
REVOLUTIONIZED THE FIELD.>>HE STUDIED SCULPTURE AS AN
ARTIST AND APPLIED SCULPTURAL METHODS TO TAXIDERMY. WHEN HE WAS IN THE FIELD, HE
WOULD CAREFULLY DOCUMENT THE ANIMALS AND MAKE WHAT WE REFER
TO AS MASKS. SO ALL THE DETAILS, THE FACE,
THE NOSE, SHAPES AND FORMS TO THE HEAD. THEN HE WOULD CAREFULLY SKIN AND
PREPARE THE ANIMAL. SOMETIMES MAKING PLASTER
IMPRESSIONS OF LIMBS AND ONCE HE WAS BACK TO NEW YORK IN THE
MUSEUM STUDIO, HE COULD RECREATE THE FORM, THE MUSCULAR FORM OF
THE ANIMAL.>>THESE ARE CALLED MOUNTAINS. THEY ARE NOT STUFFED ANIMALS. PEOPLE DIDN’T STUFF THEM FULL OF
COTTON. INSTEAD, THEY ARE MOUNTED SO
IT’S THE SKIN AND A LAYER OF PAPER-MACHE. HAVE YOU MADE PAPER-MACHE IN ART
CLASS? WE HAVE ALL DONE THAT. IT’S LIGHTWEIGHT. YOU WOULD BE SURPRISED HOW LIGHT
THE ANIMALS ARE INSIDE THE>>IT SHOWS THE METHOD OF
PRESERVING AN ASIAN ELEPHANT. DIARAMA. IN THE MUSEUM, THE DRIED ANIMAL
SKIN IS SOAKED FOR TANNING AND SHAVED DOWN WHILE A LIFE-SIZE
FORM IS BUILT. MODELLING CLAY IS APPLIED OVER
THE FORM AND SKIN IS PULLED OVER THE FORM AND FITTED. NOW, THE ELEPHANT IS ENCASED IN
A PLASTER MOLD AND SEPARATED INTO SECTIONS WHICH STILL HOLD
THE SKIN. THE FORM AND CLAY ARE REMOVED
AND REPLACED WITH A LAYER OF PLASTER. THE SKIN AND PLASTER INSIDE
COMBINE TO CREATE A RIGID FORM ONLY A HALF INCH THICK. THE SECTIONS ARE REASSEMBLED. THE TAXIDERMIST MAKES
ADJUSTMENTS AND THE ANIMAL IS READY TO EXHIBIT.>>DOESN’T IT LOOK REAL? REMEMBER, WE CAN USE OUR
IMAGINATION. PRETEND FOR A SECOND WE ARE NOT
LOOKING INTO THE MUSEUM. WE ARE LOOKING OUT ON ALASKA. WE ARE LOOKING OUT ON THIS WHOLE
ENVIRONMENT. IT ALMOST COMES TO LIFE, DOESN’T
IT?>>WHAT MAKES THE DIARAMAS SO
STRIKING IS THE FAITHFULLY DETAILED HABITAT CREATIONS
AROUND THEM.>>OUR EXHIBITS ARE NOT SIMPLY
AN ARTIST’S IMAGINING WHAT A TYPICAL HABITAT WOULD BE. THE CURATOR AND THE ARTIST
TRAVELED ON LOCATION AND DOCUMENTED A REAL PLACE AND
COLLECTED INDIVIDUAL ANIMALS.>>THEY PAINTED OUT DOORS TO
CAPTURE THE EXACT COLORS AND COMPOSITION.>>ALL THE PLANTS AND ANIMALS IN
THE BACKGROUND PAINTINGS, THE GEOLOGY, THE TYPICAL WEATHER
PATTERN, THE LIGHTING SYSTEMS DUPLICATE THE SPECIFIC TIME OF
DAY, DAWN OR DUSK OR BRILLIANT IN THE DAY. SO EVERY EFFORT WAS MADE TO
DUPLICATE AN EXACT PLACE IN NATURE AND THOSE SPECIFIC, EXACT
ANIMALS.>>ONCE BACK IN NEW YORK, THE
PAINTERS GOT TO WORK.>>WE USED OLD RENAISSANCE
METHODS FOR PAINTING DOMES, CATHEDRAL CEILINGS AND WALLS FOR
PLOTTING THE SCENE. OFTEN COMPOUND CURVES,
BACKGROUND PAINTING AND GRID A SMALL SKETCH THAT’S THEN
TRANSFERRED ON TO THE FULL SIZE CURVED BACKGROUND.>>PAINTER JAMES WILSON
PERFECTED THE METHOD.>>WILSON WAS A TRAINED
ARCHITECT AND APPLIED HIS METHODS FOR PLOTTING
PERSPECTIVES, DRAWING ARCHITECTURAL RENDERINGS AND
PLOTTING DISTORTION ON A TWO-DIMENSIONAL SURFACE TO THE
CREATION IN THE BACKGROUND.>>AT THE TOP RIGHT WITH THE
CIRCLES HAPPENS TO BE THE VISUAL CENTER OF THE GROUP. IT’S ALSO THE EYE LEVEL. IT’S VERY IMPORTANT TO ESTABLISH
YOUR EYE LEVEL IN THESE GROUPS.>>FROM THERE, HE WOULD THEN
DEVELOP A FULL CHARCOAL DRAWING IN VALUE, LIGHT AND DARK VALUES
ARE BRIGHTER IN THE FOREGROUND BECAUSE THEY DIMINISH WITH
ATMOSPHERE BECOME LESS CONTRASTY AS THEY RECEDE INTO THE
LANDSCAPE. YOU COMPLETE THE FULL CHARCOAL
SKETCH ON THE BACKGROUND, SPRAY FIX THAT AND THEN START WORKING
IN COLOR OVER THE TOP OF THAT FOUNDATION.>>AT THIS POINT, IT LOOKS
ABSTRACT. YOU CAN SEE PUTTING THOSE GLOVES
ON THERE. YOU ARE VERY CLOSE. BUT, IF YOU DID GET BACK TO THE
POINT WHERE THIS IS GOING TO BE A SCENE FROM, YOU FIND IT TAKES
ON A GREAT DEAL OF DETAIL AND THE PAINTINGS LOOK MORE
PHOTOGRAPHIC THAN MANY OTHER BACKGROUND PAINTINGS.>>IT’S AN INGENIOUS METHOD WE
STILL APPLY TODAY. IT’S REALLY WONDERFUL.>>THE EXPLORERS IN THE FIELD
COLLECT SAMPLES TO CREATE THE DIARAMA’S FOREGROUND THAT
EMPLOYED REAL PLANTS AND INSECTS FROM THE SIGHT. SOME SCENES WERE DRESSED UP WITH
PAINTED WATER SURFACES AND SYNTHETIC SNOW.>>WHEN YOU LOOK AT OUR AFRICAN
ELEPHANTS OR THAT ANTELOPE BEHIND ME, THEY DON’T DEPICT A
TYPICAL EXAMPLE OF THE SPECIES. THEY DEPICT AND EXACT INDIVIDUAL
DOCUMENTED IN THE FIELD AND RECREATED BACK HERE IN NEW YORK.>>WITH UNIQUE COMBINATION OF
THESE ELEMENTS, VIVID BACKGROUNDS, FOREGROUNDS YOU
COULD ALMOST TOUCH AND EXTRAORDINARY LIFE-LIKE
TAXIDERMY, HE MADE A KIND OF>>HE WAS WONDERFUL AT CAPTURING
A SENSE OF A RUSTED MOTION. MAGIC. IN POSE OF AN ANIMAL THAT REALLY
EXPRESSED A CERTAIN MOTION OR A CERTAIN ATTITUDE OR MOOD, YOU
KNOW, THE SHAMBLING ATTITUDE OF A BEAR VERSUS THE REGAL PROUD
LOOK OF A LION VERSUS THE STATUE OF AN ELEPHANT. HE CAPTURED THE CHARACTERISTICS
OF THE ANIMALS.>>ANIMALS WERE KILLED TO CREATE
THE TIME CAPSULES, THE CONSERVATIONISTS OF THE DAY FELT
THE DEATHS WERE IN THE SERVICE OF SCIENCE AND HISTORY.>>HE SEES THE DIARAMAS NOT ONLY
AS A TOOL FOR CONSERVATION AND URGING FOR PRESERVATION, BUT HE
ALSO SEES THE DIARAMAS AS QUITE POSSIBLY THE LAST PLACE WHERE
PEOPLE MAY SEE SOME OF THESE A LAST DITCH EFFORT TO PRESERVE
THEM. CREATURES.>>EVENTUALLY, THE MUSEUM
COMMISSIONED MORE THAN 250 DIARAMAS BETWEEN 1902 AND 2007
AND ORGANIZED THEM IN SEVERAL HALLS THROUGHOUT THE VAST
BUILDING.>>IT’S SUCH A UNIQUE ART FORM
AT THIS INTERSECTION OF ART AND I MEAN THEIR ILLUSION BECAUSE
THEY ARE THE WORK OF AN ARTIST. SCIENCE. EVEN THE MOUNTAIN SPECIMENS ARE
ARTISTIC WORKS. THEY ARE CREATED WITH THE
DISCIPLINE SO MUCH SO THAT THEY REALLY DEPICT AN ACCURATE
SPECIMEN.>>FOR ALL OF THEIR ART
INDUSTRY, THE DIARAMAS CAN SEEM ALMOST OLD FASHIONED. THEY ARE ANTIDIGITAL. ACCORDING TO THEIR STEWARDS,
THEIR EXIST TENSE HERE, REAL, NOT VIRTUAL IS THE SOURCE OF
THEIR POWER. THEY HAVE A SENSE OF SCALE AND
TEXTURE. IMPOSSIBLE TO REPLICATE ON A
TWO-DIMENSIONAL SCREEN.>>THE REASON PEOPLE COME TO THE
NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM IS TO SEE REAL THINGS. IT’S ONLY BY CONFRONTING THE
REAL THING THAT YOU GET A SENSE OF WHAT IT’S LIKE, WHAT’S ITS
SIZE? WHAT DOES IT REALLY LOOK LIKE UP
CLOSE?>>BY 2008, CLOSE EXAMINATION
MADE IT OBVIOUS THEY WERE BEGINNING TO LOSE THEIR LUSTER.>>THIS HALL WAS INSTALLED IN
1945 ORIGINALLY. MOST OF THE DIARAMA’S ARE THAT
AGE. THANKS TO BLEACHING BY UV, MANY
OF THEM LOOK TIRED. THEY HAVE LOST THEIR COLOR. THE PROBLEMS OF HEAT AND
HUMIDITY WERE AFFECTING THEM.>>THE NEW HALL OF NORTH
AMERICAN MAMMALS WAS NAMED FOR LEWIS BERNARD.>>WE ARE OF THE SAME VINTAGE. I REMEMBER COMING TO THIS HALL
WITH MY MOTHER. OF COURSE, I CAME WITH MY MOTHER
TAKING THE SUBWAY FROM BROOKLYN WHEN MY SON WAS 2 OR 3 YEARS
OLD. THE MORE WE LOOKED AT THE HALL,
THE MORE THE MAGIC WEARED UPON>>HE SEES TWO STORIES TOLD
HERE. US.>>THE STORY OF WHAT HE DID IN
THE WILDERNESS OF THE UNITED STATES AND ALSO THE STORIES OF
THE ART, ARTISTS AND EXHIBITORS THAT BROUGHT THEM BACK TO LIFE. IT’S EXTRAORDINARY.>>IT MAKES IT VERY REAL TO SEE
AN ANIMAL IN A HABITAT. YOU CAN IMAGINE WALKING THROUGH
THE GLASS THERE OR BEING THERE IN ALASKA.>>TAXIDERMISTS DON’T NEED TO
IMAGINE WALKING THROUGH THE>>THE FIRST TIME I STEPPED
INSIDE THE DIARAMA, I WAS ALMOST GLASS. I STOOD IN THERE AND FOR AWHILE,
I COULDN’T BELIEVE WHERE I WAS TRANSCENDED. BECAUSE THESE HALLS HAVE BEEN MY
VERY INSPIRATION SINCE I WAS A>>HE ALWAYS WANTED TO BE A
TAXIDERMIST. FOR HIM, THESE DIARAMAS ARE
SACRED GROUND.>>GOOD TAXIDERMY AND GREAT
DIARAMAS REALLY INVOKE EMOTION. THEY OPEN YOUR MIND TO DIFFERENT
WAYS OF THINKING AND THEY REALLY EDUCATE IN THE GREATEST WAYS
BECAUSE WHERE ELSE WOULD YOU BE ABLE TO GET CLOSE TO A MOOSE
LIKE THIS?>>HE’S PART OF A TEAM OF
TAXIDERMISTS, CONSERVATIVES AND ARTISTS WHO WORK ON THE
RESTORATION OF THE DIARAMAS THAT ARE TREATED AS WORKS OF ART AT
THE MUSEUM.>>THEY ARE SEALED REALLY WELL. THE ONLY WAY TO GET INSIDE THEM
IS TO PULL THE GLASS OFF. THE MOMENT YOU PULL THE GLASS
OFF, THAT’S WHEN BAD THINGS GREAT PAINS WERE TAKEN TO ENSURE
THEY WERE NOT DAMAGED. HAPPEN.>>CARPENTER RICHARD WEBBER
BUILT ELABORATE PLATFORMS FOR EACH DIARAMA. TO PREVENT BAD THINGS FROM
HAPPENING, EXTRA PRECAUTIONS ARE TAKEN.>>I PUT ON THESE MOCCASINS
BECAUSE WE FOUND THROUGH THE WORK WE HAVE DONE THAT IF YOU DO
NEED TO PUT A FOOT ON TO THE TERRAIN OF THE DIARAMA, YOU
REALLY DISRUPT THE SURFACE THE LEAST IF YOU ARE WEARING
MOCCASINS. SO, THAT’S WHAT WE WEAR WHEN WE
NEED TO ENTER.>>THE FIRST STEP IS A GOOD
CLEANING.>>THEY ARE DIRTY, RIDICULOUSLY
DUSTY. THE PAPER HAS DEGRADED. IT’S CURLED. I TRY TO BEND IT BACK. IT CRACKS RIGHT AWAY. IT’S QUITE FRAGILE.>>CLEANING WON’T BE ENOUGH FOR
THESE FADED BROWN BEARS. THEY NEED A MAKEOVER.>>>THIS ICONIC DIARAMA WAS
CREATED IN 1942. IT DEPICTS A SCENE OF THE SNOW
COVERED PINNACLES IN THE ISLANDS OF ALASKA.>>I WANTED TO BE A TAXIDERMIST
AND FOLLOW IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF THESE MEN, CLARK, ROCKWELL. TO BE ABLE TO WORK ON THEIR
PIECES HAS BEEN THE MOST AMAZING DREAM COME TRUE.>>THE MUSEUM BORROWED THREE
SPECIMEN FROM THE SMITHSONIAN MUSEUM. VINTAGE BEARSKINS ALMOST 100
YEARS OLD. FOR ME, THIS IS CHRISTMAS
MORNING. IT MIGHT AS WELL BE. THIS IS FUN.>>THEY ARE THE SAME AGE AS THE
MUSEUM’S BROWN BEARS. THE BORROWED BEARS ARE ALSO
ALASKAN.>>LOOKING AT HOW RICH THE
BROWNS ARE. IF YOU LOOK AT THE MOUNTS, THEY
ARE VERY, VERY BLOND ALL DOWN THE ARMS OF THE BEARS ARE WHAT
GET THE DARKEST. THE ARMS. THIS IS REALLY GREAT REFERENCE.>>COLORS ARE SPECTACULAR.>>THEY REALLY ARE.>>USING THE SMITHSONIAN BEARS
AS A GUIDE, THEY MIX COLORS AND BEGIN. ♪♪>>I SPRAYED THAT COLOR ON THE
SHOULDERS AND BROUGHT IT DOWN TO THE CHEST A LITTLE BIT.>>I THINK THE HEAD IS STARTING
TO BELONG TO THE BODY. WHAT DO YOU THINK? THAT’S ALWAYS A GOOD THING.>>GOOD. SO, NEXT WOULD BE TO TAKE THAT
GENERAL BODY COLOR AND START FLICKING AWAY AT THE DARKS AND
THE HEAD.>>IT TOOK SIX MONTHS FOR THE
TEAM TO RESTORE THE BEARS TURNING THESE BLONDS INTO THE
YOUNG BRUNETTES THEY HAD ONCE EVERY MEMBER OF THE RESTORATION
TEAM HAS A FAVORITE. BEEN. CONSERVATOR JULIA IS FOND OF A
SQUIRREL.>>I PARTICULARLY LIKE THIS
SQUIRREL DIARAMA.>>IT YELLOWED OVER THE YEARS.>>THE VIEWER IS CLOSE TO THAT
SO THE EXTENT OF THE ILLUSION HAS TO BE, YOU KNOW, HAS TO BE
VERY EFFECTIVE FROM A SHORT>>THE CONSERVATION TEAM CAME UP
WITH A CERAMIC FIBER INSULATION DISTANCE. MATERIAL AND SCULPTED SEVERAL
WINTER FOREGROUNDS. IT IS THE TINIEST DETAIL THAT
BRINGS THESE SCENES TO LIFE.>>I RECEIVED, IN THE MAIL, A
BOX WITH SOME FRESH ANTELOPE SO, NOW WE CAN CLIMB BACK INTO
THE DIARAMA AND DEPOSIT THESE BY DROPPINGS. THE SPECIMEN TO ADD ANOTHER
LEVEL OF REALISM TO THE DIARAMA.>>THE JOB OF PREPARING AND
DROPPING THE DROPPINGS FALLS TO>>THIS IS THE ANTELOPE
DROPPINGS. JULIA. AS THEY WERE COLLECTED AND THEY
ARE ACTUALLY IN PRETTY GOOD SHAPE. THEY ARE NOT VERY CRUMBABLY OR
ANYTHING. BECAUSE THEY ARE GOING TO BE IN
THE DIARAMA FOR A LONG TIME, IT’S A GOOD IDEA TO CONSOLIDATE
THEM, TO GIVE THEM EXTRA SO, WE ARE USING A STABLE
ADHESIVE THAT’S IN A DILUTE STRENGTH. SOLUTION WITH ACETONE AND THEN
WE’LL LET THEM DRY AND INSTALL THEM IN THE DIARAMA. WE REFERENCED A NUMBER OF
PHOTOGRAPHS TAKEN BY TRACKERS WHO WERE OUT AND BASICALLY
TRYING TO UNDERSTAND HOW TO TELL THESE DROPPINGS FROM OTHER TYPES
OF DROPPINGS. THEY WERE PRINTED OUT AND WE
BRING THEM IN TO FORM OUR ARRANGEMENT.>>THIS LIFE AT THE MUSEUM,
WHERE ELSE WOULD YOU GET REALLY EXCITED ABOUT THE DROPPINGS?>>OR THE MOISTNESS OF A DEER’S
NOSE? OR THE TEXTURE OF ALASKAN EEL
GRASS? OR THE PERFECT COLOR OF FERN? THE TEAM’S PASSION FOR THEIR
WORK IS OBVIOUS. AS IS THEIR UNFLINCHING
ATTENTION TO DETAIL.>>WHAT I’M DOING HERE, WE HAVE
TO REPLACE THE WHISKERS ON THE FEMALE JAGUAR. I HAVE ALREADY DONE IT FOR THE
MALE. THE BEST MATERIAL TO USE IS THE
HAIRS FROM THESE AFRICAN WHAT I’M DOING IS, I HAVE
ACTUALLY TAKEN A WHISKER FROM PORCUPINES. THE JAGUAR AND I’M TRYING TO GO
THROUGH THEM TO FIND THE RIGHT DIAMETER OF HAIR THAT IS GOING
TO RESEMBLE THE WHISKER THE BEST.>>THE EYE. IT’S AMAZING. THIS IS JUST DRY COLOR. YOU JUST BRUSH IT INTO THE
STRUCTURE OF THE FEATHER AND IT RESTORES THE COLOR. IT JUST BINDS TO THE FEATHERS.>>MY TECHNIQUE IS USING A
RELATIVELY TINY BRUSH TO WORK VERY LOCALLY SO THAT WHEREVER
THE PAINT IS ACTUALLY IN GOOD CONDITION I’M NOT TOUCHING IT. AND I’M TRYING TO BLEND IN MY
WORK IN A VERY LOCALIZED WAY.>>AFTER TWO YEARS WITH A TEAM
OF FIVE CONSERVATORS, THREE ARTISTS, ONE TAXIDERMIST,
INTERNS AND VOLUNTEERS, THE RESTORATION OF ALL 43 DIARAMAS
WAS COMPLETE IN THE FALL OF 2012.>>I THINK OF ALL THE DIARAMAS,
THE BROWN BEAR IS THE MUSEUM ICON IN THE HALL. TO SEE IT BEFORE AND AFTER, IT’S
MADE SUCH A DIFFERENCE BEING ABLE TO GO IN AND RESTORE IT. WE HAVE GONE WAY BEYOND WHAT I
HOPED WE COULD DO.>>HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE A
DIARAMA? HOW WOULD YOU DEFINE IT AND
EXPLAIN IT?>>IT’S KIND OF A PICTURE, A
THREE DIMENSIONAL PICTURE OF AN ANIMAL AND ITS HABITAT. THE FOURTH PART OF THE
EXPERIENCE IS US AND THE PEOPLE. DIARAMA WORK, IF NO ONE IS
LOOKING AT IT –>>IT’S A WONDERFUL THING TO
THINK THESE DIARAMAS ARE GOING TO CONTINUE INTO THE FORESEEABLE
FUTURE, TELL PEOPLE ABOUT THE NATURAL WORLD, INCLUDING DETAILS
THAT YOU ARE NOT GOING TO GET IN YOU ARE NOT GOING TO GET IT BY
TELEVISION IMAGES OR ANY OF THE ANY OTHER WAY. OTHER WONDERFUL DISPLAYS WE HAVE
HERE.>>TODAY THE MUSEUM CONSISTS OF
25 INTERCONNECTED BUILDINGS. AN EVER EVOLVING INSTITUTION
THAT MAINTAINED, REFRESHED AND REIMAGINED.>>THIS IS A SCIENTIFIC
INSTITUTION. IT’S GOT TO BE AT THE CUTTING
EDGE. SCIENCE IS ALWAYS MOVING
FORWARD.>>EXPEDITIONS STILL GO ON. MORE THAN 100 A YEAR AND THERE
ARE 200 SCIENTISTS WORKING HERE TO CATALOG AND CURE RATE WHAT
GETS COLLECTED IN THE FIELD.>>THEY ARE COLLECTING. THEY ARE OBSERVING. THEY ARE STUDYING. THEY ARE ORGANIZING.>>FOR ALL THAT’S ON DISPLAY IN
THE MUSEUM’S HALLS, THERE ARE THOUSANDS OF SPECIMENS THE
PUBLIC DOESN’T GET TO SEE. ONLY A TINY EXHIBIT OF DINOSAURS
ARE ON EXHIBIT. THE REMAINING FOSSILS AND BONES
ARE IN STORAGE BEHIND THE SCENES. STORIES THAT ARE YET TO BE TOLD.>>THESE ARE SKELETONS FROM
MONGOLIA OF RAPTORS, A GROUP OF SMALL DINOSAURS CLOSELY RELATED
TO BIRDS. A TOOTH IN MATRIX. TAIL SPIKES FROM ONE. 150 MILLION YEARS AGO. THIS IS A CHUNK OF A JAW WITH A
COUPLE TEETH STICKING OUT.>>MODERN EXPEDITION MISSIONS
EXPANDED BEYOND THE COLLECTION, EXAMINATION AND DISCUSSION OF
THE PHYSICAL SPECIMENS. MUSEUM RESEARCH IS PUBLISHED. A VISITOR EXPERIENCE IS MADE
RICHER BY THE CONSTANTLY EVOLVING DIGITAL. ANOTHER WAY TO ENGAGE A 21st
CENTURY AUDIENCE.>>THIS MUSEUM IS VERY MUCH
ACTIVE AND MORE INTERACTIVE. THIS IS A VERY EXCITING MOMENT
BECAUSE IT REALLY TRANSFORMS WHAT IT MEANS TO BE A MUSEUM IN
THE 21st CENTURY.>>CAN’T FIND T-REX? THERE’S AN APP FOR THAT.>>IT CAN TAKE PLACE IN YOUR
HAND, IN YOUR CELL PHONE. IT’S MOBILE APPLICATION. ANYTIME, ANYWHERE LEARNING. ANYTIME, ANYWHERE INTERACTING
WITH THE MUSEUM ITSELF.>>STILL HOST OF COUNTLESS
SCHOOL FIELD TRIPS, THE MUSEUM WELCOMES 5 MILLION VISITORS A
YEAR. IT’S AN EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTION
TRAINING THOUSANDS OF TEACHERS EACH YEAR. EDUCATORS CAN EARN A MASTERS AT
TEACHING EARTH SCIENCE HERE.>>THERE’S SOME SORT OF BOUNDARY
–>>AND A PH.D. IN COMPARATIVE
BIOLOGY. EVERY YEAR THE MUSEUM HOLDS A
FILM FESTIVAL NAMED AFTER A RENOWNED ANTHROPOLOGIST THAT
WORKED HERE FROM 1926 UNTIL HER DEATH IN 1978. THE EVOLUTION IS ONGOING
SIMULTANEOUSLY MODERNIZING AND>>WE SORT OF MOVE AROUND THE
EDGES OF THE MUSEUM AND THE PRESERVING THE INSTITUTION. FIRST PROJECT WITH THE CENTER
FOR SPACE AND EARTH, WHICH, OF COURSE, WAS A FANTASTIC LOOKING
FORWARD MODERNIZATION AND TAKING ON SOME OF THE MOST EXCITING
QUESTIONS ABOUT THE UNIVERSE THEN WE MOVED OVER TO 77th
STREET AND GET A COMPLETE BEYOND. RESTORATION AND PRESERVATION OF
THE CASTLE THAT SITS OVER THERE.>>AND IN 2012, THE RESTORE
DIARAMAS AND THE REIMAGINED THEODORE ROOSEVELT MEMORIAL HALL
ON CENTRAL PARK WEST RELINKING THE PRESIDENT’S LEGACY TO THE
MUSEUM.>>OUR CONSERVATION PRESIDENT
WHOSE HISTORY IS SO TIED IN WITH THE HISTORY OF THE MUSEUM. HE’S REALLY PART OF THE FABRIC
OF THE INSTITUTION AND ITS>>IN ADDITION TO THOSE 51,
ROOSEVELT WAS ALSO RESPONSIBLE ORIGINS. FOR THE CREATION OF 150 NATIONAL
FORESTS, FIVE NATIONAL PARKS AND FOUR NATIONAL GAME RESERVES. AS PRESIDENT, HE SPEARHEADED
WILDLIFE PRESERVATION LAWS AND DESIGNATED 230 MILLION ACRES OF
PRESERVE WILDERNESS.>>IT IS PR STORY. IF IT HAD NOT BEEN FOR HIM AND
WHAT HE DID AS THE CONSERVATION PRESIDENT, I STRONGLY SUSPECT
THESE WILDERNESS LANDSCAPES WOULD NO LONGER EXIST.>>TODAY, MUSEUM WAITERS ARE
HOPING TO MAKE THIS GREAT MAN LESS MONUMENTAL TAKING HIM OFF
THE PEDESTAL.>>WE DECIDED TO MAKE ROOSEVELT
HIMSELF.>>CAST IN BRONZE, THIS STATUE
IS MODELLED ON TR ON A CAMPING TRIP TO YOSEMITE. THEY HAD EXTRA HELP FROM A T.R.>>YOU ARE GETTING A VERY
SPECIAL SNEAK PEEK OF OUR IMPERSONATOR. ROOSEVELT SCULPTURE. ONLY NOW JUST ARRIVED IN THE
HALL. I’M GOING TO TAKE THE PACKING
BLANKET OFF.>>THE STATUE INVITES VISITORS
TO SIT NEXT TO THE PRESIDENT AND CONTEMPLATE HIS CRUCIAL ROLE IN
THE AMERICAN CONSERVATION MOVEMENT OR TO STICK YOUR FINGER
IN HIS EAR. IN THE CENTER OF THE HALL IS A
NEWLY INSTALLED BRONZE FLOOR MEDALLION BEARING A ROOSEVELT
QUOTE.>>READ WHAT IT SAYS. THIS IS A QUOTE FROM THEODORE
ROOSEVELT.>>THERE CAN BE NO GREATER ISSUE
THAN THAT OF CONSERVATION IN THIS COUNTRY.>>SURROUNDING THIS SCULPTURE, A
COLLECTION OF ROOSEVELT>>ROOSEVELT COLLECTED AS A BOY
WILL BE HERE ON VIEW IN THE HALL ARTIFACTS. IN ADDITION TO THAT, THERE ARE
LETTERS AND MANUSCRIPTS, A COPY OF DARWIN’S ORIGIN OF THE
SPECIES WHICH HE READ WHEN HE WAS 10.>>AN OWL TEDDY PRESERVED WHEN
HE WAS JUST 12. THE THEODORE ROOSEVELT HALL WAS
DEDICATED IN OCTOBER 2012 ON TEDDY ROOSEVELT’S BIRTHDAY. ALONG WITH THE RESTORATION OF
THE MAMMAL DIARAMAS, IT TOOK THREE YEARS AND COST $40
MILLION.>>THIS PROJECT UNDERSCORES AND
CELEBRATES THE CONNECTIONS AMONG THIS MUSEUM, THEODORE ROOSEVELT
AND THE FIELD OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION.>>IN ATTENDANCE WAS HIS GREAT,
GREAT GRANDSON.>>I THINK IT’S A GREAT REMINDER
BETWEEN THE CONNECTION OF HIS CONSERVATION AND THE MUSEUM OF
NATURAL HISTORY. I KNOW HE WOULD HAVE REALLY
ENJOYED THAT.>>SEEING HIM IN THIS HALL MAKES
ME THINK — ART IS LONG. LIFE IS SHORT. WE ARE PROUD TO HAVE BEEN PART
OF THE REINSTALLATION OF THE ROOSEVELT MEMORIAL FOR NOW AND
FUTURE GENERATIONS.>>NOT JUST FOR PRESIDENTS AND
FUTURE SCIENTISTS, BUT ANYONE ENGAGED IN OUR UNIVERSE.>>THERE’S ONLY ONE WAY IT
WORKS. THAT’S THROUGH KNOWLEDGE AND
UNDERSTANDING. IT’S SO IMPORTANT TO HAVE PEOPLE
UNDERSTAND BUT TO DO IT IN A WAY THAT MAKES THEM FEEL LIKE THEY
HAVE AN INVESTMENT AS THEY CERTAINLY DO AND THE WEIGHT OF
THE WORLD. AT THIS MUSEUM, WE TRY TO DO
THAT. THERE ARE NO HEAVY APPLICATIONAL
MESSAGES HERE. IF YOU WANT TO HAVE PEOPLE DO IS
TO COME IN, SEE THE BEAUTY OF EVERYTHING THAT LIVES IN THIS
WORLD AND DEVELOP THAT KIND OF>>ONE OF THE THINGS THAT
HAPPENS IS YOU BEGIN TO DISCOVER CONSCIOUSNESS. THAT SCIENCE IS NOT FOR EXPERTS
ONLY. EVERYBODY CAN PARTAKE OF IT. YOU JUST HAVE TO HAVE IT BROUGHT
TO YOU IN A WAY THAT MAKES IT ACCESSIBLE AND EXCITING.>>IT IS A MUSEUM FOR ALL OF US.>>THIS WAS A MUSEUM THAT CAME
FROM THE AGE WHEN PUBLIC BUILDINGS WERE EXPECTED TO BE
GRAND AND TO BE GIVING US AS THE PUBLIC, SOMETHING ALMOST NOBLE. YOU FEEL THAT ALL THE WAY
THROUGH IT.>>OKAY, I THINK WE ARE OUT OF
TIME. ONCE AGAIN, THANK YOU SO MUCH
FOR VISITING THE MUSEUM. SHOW ME THUMBS UP IF YOU HAD
FUN.>>PARTICULARLY SINCE IT’S SO
FULL OF KIDS AND ALWAYS HAS BEEN AND I HOPE ALWAYS WILL BE,
THERE’S SOMETHING NICE ABOUT REMINDING KIDS THAT THAT’S THE
PUBLIC ARCHITECTURE CAN CREATE A SENSE OF GRAND. IT WAS MADE FOR YOU.>>FOR YOU, YOUR PORTHOLE TO THE
GREATER NATURAL WORLD.>>YOU COME INTO THE MUSEUM AND
YOU LOOK THROUGH THESE WINDOWS, OUT ON TO THESE SOMETIMES
DISTANT AND EXOTIC AREAS. OFTENTIMES, WILDLIFE AND NATURE
ARE CLOSE TO US AND BECAUSE OF THE GRAND WAY THAT THEY ARE
PRESENTED ONE CAN HELP BUT FEEL AN ACCOUNTABILITY FOR PRESERVING
WHAT ONE IS SEEING BECAUSE OF THE BEAUTY AND THE SPLENDOR. THEY ARE GREAT TOOLS FOR
NURTURING AN APPRECIATION AND WONDER OF NATURE.>>IT IS FUN TO IMAGINE AS HIS
GREAT, GREAT GRANDSON DOES, TEDDY ROOSEVELT ROAMING THE
HALLS TODAY. WHAT WOULD HE THINK OF THE
DINOSAUR COLLECTION OR THE BROWN BEARS OR THE NEW YORKERS WHO
HOLD THIS PLACE DEAR? WE THINK HE WOULD BE PROUD. THE PRESERVATION OF THE
ROOSEVELT HALL, ROOSEVELT’S LEGACY AS OUR CONSERVATION
PRESIDENT IS NOT LIKELY TO BE FORGOTTEN. I’M TOM BROKAW. THANKS FOR WATCHING THIS
TREASURE OF NEW YORK.>>>THIS PROGRAM IS MADE
POSSIBLE THROUGH THE GENEROUS SUPPORT OF — — Captions by
VITAC —

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