Behind The Scenes

Tag Archives: John James Audubon

Find Audubon’s Masterpieces in Central Park!

On March 21, Audubon’s Aviary:Parts Unknown will open at the New-York Historical Society, featuring over 100 of Audubon’s watercolors for the Birds of America. Some of these birds will seem exotic to North Americans, but did you know that many of them can be found in the city’s own backyard: Central Park? Some birds are [...]

Puffins: Audubon’s Lovebirds

We can all tell that Atlantic Puffins are some of the most adorable birds out there, but did you know they’re also hopeless romantics? To mate, puffins form long-term relationships, where the male builds the nest and both parents incubate the egg and feed the chick, known as a “puffling.” Happy Valentine’s Day! When John [...]

Audubon’s Work Becomes Feathering For Rats Nests

Our current exhibition Audubon’s Aviary: Part 1 of the Complete Flock is now open, and everyone is loving the collection of original watercolors displayed throughout the second floor. But did you know that the exhibition also features some lesser-known Auduboniana? One of our favorites is this Meiji Period (approximately 1868-1912) woodcut depicting John James Audubon. Audubon [...]

Where Have All The Pigeons Gone?

New York City would be an entirely different place without our pigeons (AKA Rock Doves, Carrier Pigeons). But for hundreds of years, a different pigeon dominated America’s landscape. The Passenger Pigeon was once the most abundant bird on the North American continent, with estimates putting their population at three to five billion at their height. [...]

For Red-Tailed Hawks, Skyscrapers Are Just Cliffs

As we’ve mentioned before, John James Audubon often depicted the dark side of nature through birds of prey. His watercolor of two Red-Tailed Hawks shows two of the birds fighting over a fresh kill, a common sight in bird territory. However, many people assume that a bird’s habitat is a secluded forest or cliffside. Not [...]

Pale Male, Audubon and the Life of the Red-Tailed Hawk

UPDATE BELOW: If Central Park had a mascot, it would be Pale Male, the majestic Red-tailed Hawk who has made the park his home since the early 1990s. Birders have chronicled his life and loves, from First Love to Lola to his latest mate, Lima. But nature has its dark side; last week Lima was [...]

The Day Thanksgiving Was Born

  Thanksgiving may have been celebrated by Pilgirms and Native Americans in New England with feasts of corn and eel (yes, eel), but it wasn’t until 1863 that it became a truly American holiday. Sarah Joseph Hale was the first to suggest that Thanksgiving should be celebrated nationwide, and after a 20 year campaign President [...]

The New-York Historical Society Turns 207, And Still Has Your Favorite Things

Yesterday in 1804, the New-York Historical Society was founded, and 207 years later we’re still going strong, undergoing major changes that are making New-York Historical more open, welcoming and hospitable. In honor of our founding (and out of curiosity), we asked our Twitter followers what their favorite exhibitions, artworks or artifacts are in our centuries-old collection. And it [...]