Thursday, July 20, 2006
A beautiful buiding in it's own right, this museum is a treasure! The turret in the "L" houses a planetarium; the current show, besides the usual nightime sky is explaining volcanoes throughout the solar system and is quite amazing!
The first floor is a natural history museum, and also houses a gift shop inside the front entrance, and at the far end is a gallery that rotates exhibits. The current one is an amazing set of images shot with an 8x10 (negative size) view camera of Vermont side-hill farms.
You'll have to pardon my attempts to convey the scope and beauty of the interior of this wonderful place. These are handheld, existing light exposures at 1/8 to 1/15 of a second, wide open aperture with my digital Nikon set on 400 ASA speed.
The second floor has an overview of cultures from around the world through the ages, along with some Vermont, St. Johnsbury and Fairbanks history. It also houses the rock exhibits that used to be in the basement before the weather station was enlarged.
The basement has a small display showing the history of Fairbanks scales and their manufacture in St. Johnsbury, and houses the weather station for Vermont Public Radio and some other affiliates.
I've been here many times through the years, the first time with my mother-in-law who could remember attending dinners in the Fairbanks family homes when she was young, before the "family fortune" disappeared and they lost everything. It was always a very special place for her, and has become one to me as well.