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Museums In The 21st Century Essay

1333 words - 6 pages

A museum is “a building in which objects of historical, scientific, artistic, or cultural interest are stored and exhibited.” (dictionary.com). This is the literal definition of a museum as well as my view of them coming into my first semester of college. I believed they were boring, outdated places where historical items were displayed. As I moved through the semester, my professor helped me gain a new perspective of these remarkable museums; one of respect and astonishment. Museums are meant to aid in learning and safeguarding of things that should never be forgotten. Of the many great places I visited this semester that adjusted my feelings towards museums, the ones that had the greatest impact were The National Museum of Natural History, The Newseum, The National Gallery of Art, and The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. These places are there to remind the general public about things that should never be forgotten; they preserve the history and beauty of the world.
One of my first museums I visited in Washington, D.C. was The National Museum of Natural History. I arrived with no expectations besides the thought of how am I going to spend 3 hours here? While walking through the doors I was astonished to see the enormous elephant standing there as if it was guarding the museum entrance. I continued through the exhibits looking at the amazing skeletons of the extinct creatures that once roamed this earth, possibly in the spot I was standing in. As I went further into the museum, I arrived at the Butterfly Pavilion. It was a room that you can go into to observe real, live, enormous butterflies. The exhibits there made my mind run wild like never before. In my mind the purpose of The National Museum of Natural History is a very important one. It is to spark your imagination using things from the natural world. With this purpose in mind, they surpass all and every expectation you can have.
Following my amazing experience at The National Museum of Natural History, I visited The Newseum. Once again my expectations were low to say the least. When I arrived, I was in shock that a museum could be that modern and cater to such a wide array of demographics. It was greatly different than any museum before it. The exhibits they display caught my attention fast. As I traveled through the Newseum, I came across the 9/11 Gallery. It was there that my emotions began to come out. Like The National Museum of Natural History did with my imagination, the Newseum did with my memories. It brought out emotions I forgot I had from a time when this country was in shambles. It displayed the covers from major papers throughout the country as well as the rest of the world; it gave the perspective from many different places. In a different part of the Newseum, a section of the Berlin Wall was on display; also reminding viewers of a rough time in another part of the world. Even though there are many sad exhibitions within the Newseum, there are many...

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