New York University (NYU) Libraries is hosting an exhibition: “Albert Gallatin: A Genevan at the Heart of the American Dream” in the Mamdouha Bobst Gallery in the Bobst Library through April 1, 2013. The exhibition is free and open to the public from 9:30am-6:00 pm, Monday through Saturday.
Gallatin was the longest serving Secretary of the Treasury, serving for nearly 13 years from 1801 to 1814, under Presidents Jefferson and Madison. Though his political career is fairly familiar to many people, Gallatin’s anthropological interests are not. The exhibit includes material related to Gallatin's work as an ethnologist and linguist, concentrating primarily on Native American languages. The exhibition will feature the many roles Gallatin played in the United States as statesman, diplomat, ethnographer, and founder of New York University.
The original exhibition was installed in the Library of Geneva last year, curated by the Library of Geneva and the New York University Archives. It highlighted the achievements of a native son as well as the history of Geneva as a hotbed of enlightenment philosophy and its influence on Gallatin's intellectual development.
“Fabienne Finat, curator at the Library of Geneva, thought NYU would be a natural venue for the exhibition so I collaborated with her on adapting it to the Mamdouha Bobst Gallery,” said NYU Archivist Nancy Cricco. “Most of the materials on view are from Geneva, with the exception of some items from the University Archives and New-York Historical Society.”
Cricco adds: “The unique aspect of this collaboration with the Library of Geneva is our mutual bond with Albert Gallatin. The education Gallatin received and the ideals instilled in him while growing up in Geneva turned out to have a significant impact on NYU and the United States.”
The NYU Division of Libraries comprises five libraries in Manhattan and one each in Abu Dhabi and Shanghai. Its flagship, the Elmer Holmes Bobst Library on Washington Square, houses more than four million volumes and received 2.5 million visits last year. Around the world the Libraries offers access to more than 800,000 electronic journals, books, and databases; its website received three million visits last year. For more information about the NYU Libraries, please visit http://library.nyu.edu