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The Lynx (Lynx canadensis) with her kitten. Some authorities group this animal under felis. Her urine is said to harden into precious stones.


A selection of our colleagues who demonstrate a fascination with us looking at objects, and with objects looking at us. We list them, electronically, for your illumination and erudition.

Virtual Places We Like

The wondrous Dime Museum, formerly of Baltimore, is sadly no longer in one physical location. But at their excellent Web site you can learn all about this homage to the Age of Barnum. You can see more research at the Show History site of James "Showman" Taylor. (See below)

Look! It's the FREAKATORIUM! Let's hear it for the fabulous Johnny Fox!

J. Tithonus Pednaud presents a compendium of human oddities, Albino; Bearded; Conjoined; Deformed; Dwarfism; Fakes… Etc.

The Lost Museum is home to a virtual P. T. Barnum's American Museum on-line!

McGill University has a virtual Wunderkammer. Its all about History and interaction.

The Minnesota Association of Rogue Taxidermy has a Web site. They also give tours of garbage dumpsters in Manhattan's Chinatown, in search of rare specimens.

Cabinets of Curiousity, en Francais.

Roadside America: Two words that say it all.

You will be Shocked and Amazed at and you'll find "A great bunch of magazines" and "A great web site!"

Our colleague James Taylor presents an encyclopedia of novelty & variety performers & showfolk!

Weird America seems to be as enamored of the Main Street Museum as we are of Joe Citro!

They're Blogging About Us!

VermontArtZine Learn about art—in Vermont!

Museology: Museums-about-Museums

The City Reliquary in Williamsburg, Brooklyn is one of our favorite Civic Organizations, with a new-old perspective on New York City.

The Coney Island Museum is the only museum in the world dedicated to interpreting and preserving the history of Coney Island.

The Creation Museum in Cincinnati is a Biblical science museum. O My!

The Museum of Jurassic Technology in Culver City, California, as well as cultivating "a chain of flowers to guide us," curates and disperses to the public relics from the Lower Jurassic Era, especially those demonstrating "curious technological qualities." After all, No One May Ever Have the Same Knowledge Again...

The Mutter Museum is the museum of the College of Surgeons in Philadelphia, memorializing Chang and Eng Bunker, the original "Siamese Twins," and the "Soap Lady." And who doesn't love the Bunkers and the Soap Lady?!

The Palace of Wonders in Washington, D. C. Where will you ever see another one like it? and check out the Show History site of James "Showman" Taylor. Two Headed Calves! Human Pin Cushions! JoJo the Dog-Faced Boy!

The Reanimation Library in Brooklyn is a specialized repository for books that have fallen out of mainstream circulation but take on new life as resource material for various cultural archeologists.

Natural History and Other Great Collections

[ The British Museum]

The Hartland Nature Club and their exhibition room of specimens are housed in Damon Hall in nearby Hartland, Vermont.

The Icelandic Phallological Museum may be the world's only museum showcasing the phalli of all the mammals found in a single country. What could be better than that?

The Marvelous Kunstkammer of Peter the Great in St. Petersburg, Russia. The Kunstkamera in St. Petersburg was founded in 1714 in the Summer Palace of Peter the Great, and in 1717 in Kikin Hall. It was officially opened to the public in 1727 in current "Peter the Great Museum of Science and Ethnography" building, the first purpose built museum in Russia, which housed the Russian Academy of Sciences.

The Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts houses wonders!

The Pitt Rivers Museum the world's first purpose-built entymological museum in Oxford, England

[ The John Soane Museum]

[ The Specola]

[ The Jardin des Plantes]

[ Victoria and Albert Museum]

The Capitoline Museums, the oldest public collection of art in the world, began in 1471 when Pope Sixtus IV donated a group of important ancient sculptures to the people of Rome.

The Vatican Museums, the second oldest museum in the world, traces its origins to the public displayed sculptural collection begun in 1506 by Pope Julius II the Royal Armouries in the Tower of London is the oldest museum in the United Kingdom. It opened to the public in 1660, though there had been paying privileged visitors to the armouries displays from 1592. Today the museum has three sites including its new headquarters in Leeds.[21]

Rumphius built a botanical museum in Ambon in 1662, making it the oldest recorded museum in Indonesia. Nothing remains of it except books written by himself, which are now in the library of the National Museum. Its successor was the Batavia Society of Art and Science, established on 24 April 1778. It built a museum and a library, played an important role in research, and collected much material on the natural history and culture of Indonesia.[22]

the Amerbach Cabinet, originally a private collection, was bought by the university and city of Basel in 1661 and opened to the public in 1671.

the Musée des Beaux-Arts et d'archéologie in Besançon was established in 1694 after Jean-Baptiste Boisot, an abbot, gave his personal collection to the Benedictines of the city in order to create a museum open to the public two days every week.[23]

The British Museum in London, was founded in 1753 and opened to the public in 1759.[24] Sir Hans Sloane's personal collection of curios provided the initial foundation for the British Museum's collection.[24]

The Uffizi Gallery in Florence, This art collection was begun in the 15th century by Cosimo de' Medici, enlarged by his descendants, and in 1743 bequeathed by the last heir of the House of Medici "to the people of Tuscany and to all nations." The Uffizi Palace (built 1560-1581) was designed by the Renaissance painter and architect Giorgio Vasari. The top floors were converted to gallery space, open to visitors on request, and then opened to the public as a museum in 1769 by Grand Duke Peter Leopold.[25][26]

The Museum of the History of Riga and Navigation is the oldest in Latvia and the whole of the Baltics, and one of the oldest in Europe. It was founded and opened to public in 1773 by the Riga Town Council as Himsel Museum. The rich and diverse collections of the museum originated from an art and natural sciences collection of Nikolaus von Himsel (1729–1764), a Riga doctor. Today the Museum of the History of Riga and Navigation collections number more than 500 000 items, systematised in about 80 collections.

The Hermitage Museum was founded in 1764 by Catherine the Great and has been open to the public since 1852, when the art collections of the Kunstkamera were transferred to it.

The Museo del Prado in Madrid was founded in 1785 by Charles III of Spain, originally to house the Natural History Cabinet. Later, the building was converted into the new Royal Museum of Paintings and Sculptures, opened to the public in 1819, with the aim of showing the works of art belonging to the Spanish Crown. Nowadays, with the nearby Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum and the Museo Reina Sofía, it forms the so-called Golden Triangle of Art.

The Belvedere Palace of the Habsburg monarchs in Vienna opened with a collection of art in 1781.{[27]}

The Teylers Museum in Haarlem (The Netherlands) established in 1778 and is the oldest Dutch museum.

The Louvre Museum in Paris (France), also a former royal palace, opened to the public in 1793

The Brukenthal National Museum, erected in the late 18th century in Sibiu, Transylvania, Romania, housed in the palace of Samuel von Brukenthal—who was Habsburg governor of Transylvania and who established its first collections around 1790. The collections were officially opened to the public in 1817, making it the oldest institution of its kind in Romania.

The museum of the American Philosophical Society in Philadelphia dates to 1743,[28] making it the oldest museum in the United States?

The Charleston Museum was established in 1773 thereby making it the first museum in the Southern United States. It did not open to the public until 1824.[29] Charles Willson Peale established America's first public museum in 1786 in Philadelphia's Independence Hall in 1786. It closed by the 1840s.[30]

Indian Museum, Kolkata, established in 1814 is the oldest museum in India. It has a collection of 1,02,646 artifacts

Local Interest: Our Colleagues for a Great Local Trip

The American Precision Museum in nearby Windsor, Vermont is both a world renowned repository for machine tools, and a record of the Upper Valley's long history on technology's cutting edge.

AVA Gallery and Art Center, our friends and neighbors in Lebanon, New Hampshire.

Bread and Puppet our outstanding, brave, colorful, merry, fierce colleagues in all things theater ”and they even have their own museum in a barn!

The Center for Cartoon Studies. Who knows, perhaps White River Junction was a cartoon before it was a town. Sometimes it seems that way and so a "Cartoon College" is a natural fit for our Downtown. "Hey CCS! Youre the Best!"

The Calvin Coolidge Memorial Foundation celebrates and studies America's 30th president, who was born in nearby Plymouth, Vermont. You can see his boyhood home and his grave. And buy cheese!

The Dartmouth Special Collections, where our friends curate valuable collections of human hair and, of course, Daniel Webster's socks!

The Hartford Historical Society's official Web site. *White River Junction is a village within the town of Hartford, Vermont.

The Fairbanks Museum in St. Johnsbury, Vermont is located just one hour north of the Main Street Museum an hour well spent to reach this fascinating and stately institution.

The Robert Hull Fleming Museum in Burlington, Vermont has art and Vermontiana galore! The Main Street Museum has co-curated shows of artifacts there, too.

At the Fort at Number Four in Charlestown, New Hampshire, our neighbors present living history of the Colonial period.

The Hood Museum at nearby Dartmouth College has a mermaid!

Northern Stage right here in White River Junction is a great place for live theater. Check out a show after visiting the Museum!

At the Rockingham (Vermont) Arts and Museum Project, they're excited about art! And downtown revitalization! And trains! Just like we are!

Check out the Vermont Historical Society. Their Pavilion Building in Montpelier is home to a real (stuffed) catamount. And don't forget the Vermont History Center in Barre, Vermont.

White River Junction has its own page here. "Rio Blanco; No es Tan Malo!"

Road Trips to See Relics: Real Places We Like

Visit the African Meeting House in Boston. Artifacts and more on the Black Heritage Trail.

The Anacostia Museum focuses on the families and neighborhoods of Washington, D.C. and the history and culture of African Americans nationwide.

The Home of Andrew Johnson in Greenville, Tennessee is now a National Park. Be sure to check out the willows in the back yard. They grew from little shoots taken from willows growing around Napoleon's tomb at Fontainebleau. Not kidding.

The Barnum Museum of Natural History in Bridgeport, Connecticut: Mother Nature's world P.T. Barnum-style!

The Bostonian Society in Boston. You can search their "object catalog" online. Neat Stuff!

The Cazenovia Public Library in Middle-New York State has a museum, with an Ethiopian neck rings and an Egyptian mummy!

The Conspiracy Museum in Dallas, Texas doesnt seem to have a web-presence, but here's what Margaret Cho has to say about her visit!

The Lightner Museum is only one thing to do in moss-draped St Augustine, Florida.

The Mark Twain House Hartford, Connecticut

Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge, Massachusetts is full of relics. No picking the flowers and no photos, please!

The Museum Of Bad Art (MOBA) are long-term friends. Conservation teams from the MSM stabilized "Peter the Kitty", one of the master-works from this Dedham, Massachusetts, collection.

The Christian Sanderson Museum in Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania is something "anyone born in the 20th century" should see. (Maybe anyone born in the 21st as well...)

The Thurber House, in Columbus, Ohio, former home of James.

The UCM Museum in Abita Springs, Louisiana, offers you an unforgettable time, viewing dioramas of "Aliens Landing at Mardi Gras!"

Relics From the War Between the States

The Battle of Franklin (Tennessee) has a neat little museum. Check out the photos and collars of the soldiers' dogs!

Confederate Memorial Hall in New Orleans has Gen. P. G. T. Beauregard's slippers on display!

Visit the Lee Chapel at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia, and see the grave of Lee's horse, Traveller (1857-1871)!

The Museum of the Confederacy in Richmond, Virginia, is well worth a visit.

The National Park at Vicksburg, Mississippi will help you learn all about this key city on the river, and how the North besieged it. And don't forget to check out the U.S.S. Cairo and learn about underground explosions.

At the Old Courthouse Museum you can see all the cannonballs those d--n Yankees fired at Vicksburg!

And at the Museum of the Virginia Military Institute, back in Lexington, Virginia and across the street from Traveller, Little Sorrel, the horse of Stonewall Jackson, is on display.

The Bigger Picture

Little People of America—advocacy at its best.

The National Great Blacks in Wax Museum is in Baltimore one of our favorite cities and is also housed in a renovated fire station!

The National Civil Rights Museum is in the former Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee, and pays tribute to the struggle for civil rights. It also has a really sweet vintage Cadillac parked out front!

The Southern Poverty Law Center keeps the spotlight on many of today's concerns.