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THE CARNEGIE

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V19, Page 69 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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THE CARNEGIE INSTITUTE Pittsburg, Penn.,U. S.A. Plan of First Floor. Gallery of Reptiles o cienc Gallery of Fishes Reference. A. Main Entrance to Institute B. Entrance to Main Auditorium C. Main Entrance to Library 1. Administration Rooms of Institute 2. Public Comfort Rooms 3. Administrative Rooms of Library Open Court Open Court Gallery of Birds IIUI'J!HI i"II Open Court Loan Department of Library• 1,H^ ^i7: Open Court Gallery of Useful Arts, H - 3 - ~t ~l Greenroom of p , i I Greenroom of Auditorium an. Auditorium Ceramics, etc. • • • • • O • • • Gallery of • • Architecture • • • • • 111 111111 11111E1 Gems and Coins The width of the front of the building Is 400 feet; its depth over all exceeds 800 feet. utmost magnificence has been made, is liberally supported both by public and private munificence. The ethnographical, paleontological and archaeological material gathered within its walls is immense in extent and superbly displayed. The museum of the New York botanical garden in Bronx Park is a worthy rival to the museums at Kew. The Brooklyn Institute of Arts and Sciences combines with collections illustrative of the arts excellent collections of natural history, many of which are classic. The United States National Museum at Washington, under the control of the Smithsonian Institution, of which it is a department, has been made the repository for many years past of the scientific and artistic collections coming into the possession of the government. The growth of the material entrusted to its keeping has, more particularly in recent years, been enormous, and the collections have wholly outgrown the space provided in the original building, built for it during the incumbency of Professor Spencer F. Baird as secretary of the Smithsonian Institution. The congress of the United States has in recent years made provision for the erection of a new building upon the Mall in Washington, to which the natural history collections are ultimately to be transferred, the old buildings to be retained for the display of collections illustrating the progress of the arts, until replaced by a building of better construction for the same purpose. The United States National Museum has published a great deal, and has become one of the most important agencies for the diffusion of scientific knowledge in the country. It is liberally supported by the government, and makes use of the scientific men connected with all the various departments of activity under government control as agents for research. The collections of the United States Geological Survey, as well as many of the more important scientific collections made by the Department of Agriculture, are deposited here. As the result of the great Columbian international exposition, which took place in 1893, a movement originated in the city of Chicago, where the exposition was held, to form a permanent collection of large proportions. The great building in which the international exposition of the fine arts was displayed was preserved as the temporary home for the new museum. Marshall Field contributed $r,000,000 to the furtherance of the enterprise, and in his honour the institution was called " The Field Columbian Museum." The growth of this institution was very rapid, and Mr. Field, at his death, in 1906, bequeathed to the museum $8,000,000, half to be applied to the erection of a new building, the other half to constitute an endowment fund, in addition to the revenues derived from the endowment already existing. The city of Chicago provides liberally for the support of the museum, the name of which, in the spring of 1906, was changed to " The Field Museum of Natural History." The city of St Louis has taken steps, as the result of the international exposition of 1904, to emulate the example of Chicago, and the St Louis Public Museum was founded under hopeful auspices in 1905. Probably the most magnificent foundation for the advancement of science and art in America which has as yet been created is the Carnegie Institute in the city of Pittsburg. The Carnegie Institute is a complex of institutions, consisting of a museum of art, a museum of science, and a school for the education of youth in the elements of technology. Affiliated with the museums of art and science, and under the same roof, is the Central Free Library of Pittsburg. The buildings erected for the accommodation of the institute, at the entrance to Schenley Park, cost $8,000,000, and Mr Andrew Carnegie provided liberally for the endowment of the museums of art and science and the technical school, leaving to the city of Pittsburg the maintenance of the general library. The natural history collections contained in the museum of science, although the institution was only founded in 1896, are large and important, and are particularly rich in mineralogy, geology, paleontology, botany and zoology. The entomological collections are among the most important in the new world. The conchological collections are vast, and the paleontological collectionsare among the most important in America. The great Bayet collection is the largest and most complete collection representing European paleontology in America. The Carnegie Museum contains natural history collections aggregating over 1,500,000 specimens, which cost approximately £125,000, and these are growing rapidly. The ethnological collections, particularly those illustrating the Indians of the plains, and the archaeological collections, representing the cultures more particularly of Costa Rica and of Colombia, are large. In connexion with almost all the American colleges and universities there are museums of more or less importance. The Bernice Pauahi Bishop museum at Honolulu is an institution established by private munificence, which is doing excellent work in the field of Polynesian ethnology and zoology. Other American Countries.—The national museum in the city of Mexico has in recent years been receiving intelligent encouragement and support both from the government and by private individuals, and is coming to be an institution of much importance. National museums have been established at the capitals of most of the Central American and South American states. Some of them represent considerable progress, but most of them are in a somewhat languishing condition. Notable exceptions are the national museum in Rio de Janeiro, the Museu Paraense (Museu Goeldi), at Para, the Museu Paulista at Sao Paulo, and the national museum in Buenos Aires. The latter institution is particularly rich in paleontological collections. There is an excellent museum at Valparaiso in Chile, which in recent years has been doing good work. (W. J. H.)
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