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South Street Seaport Museum Announces New Digital Galleries in Collections Online Portal: 300+ New Pieces Now Available

Jun 30 Through Aug 31 | Wed |
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South Street Seaport Museum announces the release of the next set of collections items for digital visitors to browse, research, and enjoy online. In March 2021, the Museum launched a Collections Online Portal featuring over 1,300 pieces on virtual display, allowing audiences to explore New York City's past through the archives, artifacts, and photographs of the South Street Seaport Museum. This second iteration includes over 300 more works of art and artifacts covering a variety of mediums, historical subjects, and themes relating to the growth of New York City as a world port. Now available, the digital galleries can be viewed for FREE at

Discover history and works of art from the comfort of your home with the new online database. Featuring items from the early 19th century to the mid-20th century, the online collection is comprised of a searchable database of selected works of art and historic artifacts from the Seaport Museum's permanent and working collections of over 28,500 objects, encapsulating the rich maritime heritage of New York City.

The four sets of new digital galleries include: Broadsides Broadsides are large sheets of paper printed on one side. From event advertisements to public announcements, they are predecessors of the modern poster. The Seaport Museum's collections include a wide variety of these pieces of ephemera, including broadsides printed in New York related to 1830s steamboats on the Hudson River, or goods like oysters advertised in the 1850s to be available as far west as Oswego, Elmira, and Corning, thanks to the New York and Erie Railroad.

Ship Parts and Gear The South Street Seaport Museum holds a wide variety of historic ship parts and gear, such as ship bells, capstans, binnacles, wood paneling, nameboards, anchors, and more. These artifacts largely represent ships that are no longer extant, including Hudson River steamboats, working vessels of New York Harbor, and the great ocean liners of the 20th century, as well as artifacts currently installed on board Seaport Museum's flagship Wavertree. Highlights include the ship wheel of the ocean liner SS Normandie, the famous ocean liner that burned at her West Side pier during World War II; wood paneling decoration from RMS Mauretania, originally installed near ceiling in first-class smoking room; and wood paneling from the 1865 steamboat Dean Richmond. 

Stereographs A stereograph is composed of two pictures mounted next to each other, viewed with a set of lenses known as a stereoscope. Taken around 2.5 inches apart, roughly corresponding to the spacing of the eyes, the left picture represents what the left eye would see, and likewise for the right, so when observing the pictures through a stereoscopic viewer, the pair of photographs converge into a single three-dimensional image. This optical marvel was extremely popular in the mid-19th century, becoming the first ever mass-produced photographic images sold, and a precursor to motion picture. 

US Custom House Photograph Collection Highlights A selection of 200 photographic prints, dated ca. 1920s-1960s documenting the operation of the US Customs in the port of New York, from photographic reporting of accidents and incidents, to inspections of vessels' crew quarters and passengers entering port. This selection is part of a larger collection composed of more photographic prints, postcards, historic records, and artifacts on long-term loan from the National Archives.

Additional virtual highlights of the South Street Seaport Museum collections include the following categories on Architectural Elements, Drawings and Watercolors, Manuscripts and Ephemera, Navigational Instruments and Shipwright Tools, Objects Around the Neighborhood, Paintings, Photographs, Prints and Lithographs, Printing History, Scrimshaw, Ship Components, Ship Models, Special Collections, Tattoo Collection, Remains of the Old Hotels, Institutional Archives, and Maritime Reference. The South Street Seaport Museum's collections consist of more than 28,500 works of art and artifacts and over 55,000 historic records documenting the rise of New York as a port city, and its role in the development of the economy and business of the United States through social and architectural landscapes. The Museum's collections trace the history of New York City's Harbor and Port, from the East River piers and the waterfront areas of Manhattan, to the city's other boroughs and the New Jersey shoreline. The Museum also documents and interprets New York international trade routes, global cultures, and seafaring, including all aspects of life, art, and work associated with them. For more information, visit the Museum's bi-monthly blog and the Collections Chronicles section of it at, where the collections team takes readers behind the scenes to shares some of their work, while highlighting hidden gems of history, the Seaport, and the Seaport Museum's collection.

About the South Street Seaport Museum The South Street Seaport Museum, located in the heart of the South Street Seaport Historic District in New York City, preserves and interprets the history of New York as a great port city. Founded in 1967, the Museum houses an extensive collection of works of art and artifacts, a maritime reference library, exhibition galleries and education spaces, working nineteenth century print shops, and an active fleet of historic vessels that all work to tell the story of "Where New York Begins." #SouthStreetSeaportMuseum #WhereNewYorkBegins @SouthStreetSeaportMuseum - Facebook @seaportmuseum - Instagram @seaportmuseum - Twitter

Venue: Online

12 Fulton St, New York, NY 10038 Map