The Main Street Museum
The Main Street Museum is an eclectic display space for material culture and an experiment in a new taxonomy. Originally thought of as an "alternative" museum, the museum's present form and activities resemble the 18th and 19th century " cabinet of curiosities" and point to an interest in the historic roots of museums and museology. However, the Museum also focuses on new technology, notably cataloging its collections and conducting online activity through its Wiki (see below).

Overview
The Main Street Museum was founded in 1992 in an area of White River Junction, Vermont, known as The Old South End. The Museum's collections of material culture are seemingly unfocused, although this might be the intent of the Museum's highly decentralized administration. Categories include: Flora; Fauna; significant objects from around the world; evidence of tramps; Round Things; Tangled Things; journals; extraneous bits of local history, sheet music; postcard collections; electromagnetism devices; relics from the head injury of Phineas Gage; Elvis impersonators; live music; taxidermy and biological anomalies (dehydrated cats). It simultaneously pays homage to the eighteenth century cabinet of curiosities (Wünderkammern) and a focal point of new technology through its website. The Main Street Museum believes itself to have been the first museum in the world with a (functioning) blog, initiated in September 2005. Described by the Washington Post as "quirky and avant-garde", a heterodox assortment of the local public, scholars, musicians, artists, historians, scientists, drunks and all other types of people have been drawn to the Museum's unusual demonstrations, lectures and entertainments. Currently located at White River Junction's former fire station on Bridge Street, next to the railroad underpass on the banks of the White River, the museum has been acknowledged as an integral part of White River Junction's downtown revitalization and the new urbanism of the region. The Museum has been host to prominent, freighthopping musicians and tramps since 1999. “The Main Street Museum forces one to contemplate the nature of museums and curating. Why do we save what we save? How do we decide what to discard, what to display, what to hide away, and what to destroy.” " Joe Citro, Weird New England, New York, 2006

The Catawiki
A catalog of the museum, as well as other pages describing the Museum's collections and civic activities, was formatted and presented with Wiki software in the year 2008. Museum goals include cataloging every item in their collections in this ongoing project" The Catawiki.

Building Activity

  • removed 2 media
    about 6 years ago via OpenBuildings.com