Embark on a historic voyage at the Staten Island Museum, just a ferry ride away from downtown Manhattan. Founded in 1881 and home to more than two million artifacts and specimens from ancient to contemporary periods, this “mini-Smithsonian” is rich with arts, natural sciences and local history.
Currently on view, Staten Island Ferry: The First 100 Years of Municipal Service harks back to 1905, when livestock rode the ferry alongside commuters—and the cost of travel was a nickel. The exhibit pays homage to this history through photographs, artwork, ship models and artifacts from ferries past.
Visitors can also experience the life of The Lenape: The first Staten Islanders. With artifacts dating back 12,000 years, this is the most comprehensive exhibit about the region's Native Americans in New York City and a must see for anyone interested in the local Indians.
Over in the Hall of Natural Science, a pickled star-nosed mole, a four-legged chicken and other natural wonders in jars are sure to amaze at the Cabinet of Curiosities.
The Staten Island’s hometown museum also sponsors public programs that run the gamut from leather crafts lectures to history talks and hands-on science workshops. Bird lovers are sure to enjoy ecology walks that explore different wildlife sites. Kids can check out Summer Earth Camp for an environmental alternative to video games.
A wide range of school programs meeting NYC learning standards incorporate the “real thing” into a unique and exciting learning experience.