Tenement Museum :: Manhattan, New York
The United States of America is a hodgepodge, a mishmash, a melting pot of cultures, religions, ethnicities, and ancestry. The vast majority of its citizens hail from countries far from its promising shores. Often times, these families came here with little more than the clothes on their backs and the dream of a better life. As they crossed into the Hudson River and walked the cold floors of Ellis Island, myriad immigrants would soon find themselves living in the tenement slums of New York City. The Lower East Side Tenement Museum is a monument to these hardscrabble folk; poor working class families struggling to assimilate into American culture and society. Between 1863 and 1935 Tenement Museum was simply known as 97 Orchard Street and it saw well over 7,000 people from at least 20 different countries living their simple but hopeful lives. After 72 years, the building (minus its lower floor retail space) was boarded up and served as a sort of time capsule until 1988 when it was restored in a painstaking process. In 1992 the first apartment was opened to the public and today the Tenement Museum has 6 open apartments available to visitors interested in learning about American history in a unique and vivid way.
Part of the National Park Service and designated a National Historic Landmark in 1994 the Lower East Side Tenement Museum takes great care in portraying the day to day lives and the fascinating history of America’s immigrant past. Open daily from 10:30 am to 5:00 pm the Tenement Museum is only viewable by guided tour and tickets should be booked in advance (though limited tickets may be available in the visitors’ center). Prices vary between $15 and $37 depending on age and type of tour requested. This amazing dwelling tells us almost in first person the stories, struggles, and triumphs of the new citizens who resided there. It’s a remarkable journey into the past that reflects well into the future as US shores continue to welcome the tired, the poor, and the huddled masses yearning to breathe free.
|Frommer's New York City 2012 (Frommer's Color Complete)|
|Retail Price: $19.99|
|Amazon Price: $3.60|
|Fodor's New York City 2012 (Full-color Travel Guide)|
|Retail Price: $19.99|
|Amazon Price: $4.45|
|Click image for full size|