The treasured New York Public Library has spent almost two years working on their first-ever permanent collection, which will bring incredible historical items out from the library’s research archives to the public.
The new exhibit, which will be located in the 6,400-square-foot Gottesman Hall space on the library’s main floor in the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building on Fifth Ave and 42nd St., was first announced in September 2018. It was made possible by a $12 million gift from Dr. Leonard Polonsky CBE and The Polonsky Foundation.
It is set to open in November of this year.
The exhibition will be fittingly called “Treasures,” and will feature rotating items from the library’s research collections, which are still being decided on. This includes some truly incredible artifacts, as told by the library, like:
- The Declaration of Independence written in Thomas Jefferson’s hand
- The original Bill of Rights
- Charles Dickens’s “prompt copies” featuring his handwritten notes as well as his desk, inkwell, and letter opener
- George Washington’s handwritten farewell address
- Manuscript material from Maya Angelou, T.S. Eliot, Jack Kerouac, Langston Hughes, Malcolm X, Herman Melville, Vladimir Nabokov, Mary Shelley, Virginia Woolf, Truman Capote, and many others
- The Gutenberg Bible
- The original Winnie-The-Pooh and friends dolls
- A letter from Christopher Columbus to King Ferdinand documenting his discovery
- Photos from legendary photographers, including Diane Arbus, Lewis Hine, and Richard Avedon
- Original sheet music from Beethoven and Mozart
And, unbelievably, there is much more! The New York Public Library has more than 46 million items in its collections, like manuscript material, rare books, prints, photographs, film and recorded sound, and more. These have been available to the public before, but only for research purposes.
The best part? It will completely FREE to visitors!
featured image source: Facebook / NYPL