Building on the work done by City Historian Barbara Davis and co-curator Theresa Kump Leghorn and the 325th Anniversary Committee to create a timeline exhibit about New Rochelle's history (which was displayed in the City Hall Rotunda in 2013), I propose creating an historical museum in the Standard Star building on North Avenue (thereby preserving this unique and historic facade).

The Museum would combine space for a permanent exhibit that traces the rich history of New Rochelle with a gallery for special exhibits, which could be traveling exhibits on loan from other museums (such as the Rockwell Museum in Massachusetts) or original exhibits created by the museum to focus on one particular period (Colonial Life, The Civil War Era, The Ragtime Era) or person (Norman Rockwell, Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis, even a fictional character like Dick Van Dyke!).

The Museum of the City of New Rochelle would also provide a permanent space for the many artifacts now stored in the basements of City Hall and the New Rochelle Public Library, housing them in a safe and environmentally-controlled storage area and allowing the public access to these items illustrating the rich history of the Queen City on the Sound.

The Museum of the City of New Rochelle would include office space for the City Historian and a community gathering space; it would employ a full time curator as well as staff to manage the collection, mount exhibitions and create programming for school children and visitors of all ages.

Given New Rochelle's rich history and connection to so many famous people and events I think there are endless program/exhibit ideas to support a Museum that would attract visitors from all over the country and contribute to making New Rochelle a must-see cultural destination.

Posted in: All Placemaking Ideas, Community Services
Tagged: Museum, history