Museum of Family History

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   Family History Theatre




A visit to the Museum's virtual Family History Theatre is envisaged as thus:
The visitor, having already passed through the front section of the Museum's first floor, through its Ellis Island Room, enters a walkway that leads to two small bridges situated on both sides of the Museum. The visitor then can cross over either bridge, both of which span a small river of salt water that flows underneath a floor of glass.  The river of water represents symbolically the trans-Atlantic voyage that many of our ancestors took as they left the towns of their birth in hopes of making a new beginning elsewhere. This area is only slightly lit, and one can see the images aside the walkway of immigrants disembarking from the ferry that would take them from their ship to Ellis Island. The visitor hears the sounds of immigrants, both joyous and apprehensive,  speaking different languages that permeates the air.

As the museum "traveler" arrives on the other side of the "ocean," they descend the walkway via a ramp on the other end. Then they enter the Museum's main salon and large exhibition hall.  On the left side of the salon one can't help but notice a large, glass-enclosed structure that serves as the Museum's Family History Theatre. The theatre is grand; the outer walls of this structure is transparent, and one can see those on a spiraling ramp ascending. Within this structure, the "Family History Theatre", an inner section is seen, into which one may enter to see what multimedia features await the museum visitor as they pass through the museum. The museum "traveler" then begins his or her theatre visit by entering a passageway, ascending a ramp that rises ever upward, passing from the first floor level, through the second and upper levels, finally exiting onto the Museum's roof garden.

One may choose to directly enter the Family History Theatre on the first floor, i.e.  through either of two doors, both of which lead into a darkened space, onto to a graded ramp that ascends from one floor to the next and then onto the roof. The double ramp is shaped in the form of a spiral, a double helix, which represents a simple strand of DNA or human gene.

As one winds their way around this darkened walkway, one can turn to the right or left and see, inset into the walls, the many video screens where one may watch a short video, or hear a piece of audio that represent different, current or permanent, exhibitions on display within the Museum.

In a museum of "brick and mortar," so to speak, one might need to use a headset with an infrared device to hear what is being said in a video or sound clip. However, as this is a virtual (internet-only) museum, the audio or video most often would begin to play as soon as you turn toward what is featured. Practically speaking, within your own visit here, you simply could click on a link provided that would take you along your journey. These will then  take you to various web pages that make up the Family History Theatre itself.

The content of the Theatre represents many of the exhibitions that can be found within the Museum, i.e. those that have an audio and/or video aspect to its presentation. The exhibitions referred to will generally have more audio-visual content than what has been selected for you in the Family History Theatre. The Theatre simply yet exquisitely provides the visitor with a small but scintillating introduction to the Museum's multimedia sites and thus demonstrates the Museum's unique interactivity. It might also pique one's interest and compel one to visit many other aspects of the Museum.

Please click on the "Exhibitions" link at the top of the page to begin your tour. Enjoy!



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