The Buffalo History Museum’s newest exhibition, “History Makers,” features profiles, artifacts and imagery of 20 of the Western New York region’s most historically significant and well-known figures.
“ ‘History Makers’ provided the museum an opportunity to highlight stories and objects of some of our area’s most notable historical figures,” said Tony Greco, director of exhibits and interpretive planning. “These are people that we, as Western New Yorkers, should all know. They are political leaders, civil rights activists, war heroes, and entrepreneurs – the men and women who helped shape our narrative. From first lady Abigail Fillmore establishing the first White House library to Ely Parker penning Lee’s surrender at Appomattox Court House, each figure has accomplished something extraordinary. Some of my favorite objects include wine bottles brought back from Commodore Perry’s expedition to open the port of Japan in the early 1850s, and a pocket watch carried by Joseph Ellicott, the man who led the grand survey of the Holland Purchase.”
Additional featured artifacts include Grover Cleveland’s groom’s cake, a portrait of civil rights activist and suffragist Mary B. Talbert, and the coat loaned by Ansley Wilcox to Theodore Roosevelt for use during his inauguration.
The topics and eras vary widely, with the full list of selected historical figures including Gen. Daniel Bidwell, Louise Blanchard Bethune, Grover Cleveland, Elizabeth Dickinson, Joseph Ellicott, Abigail Powers Fillmore, Millard Fillmore, Rick James, John D. Larkin, Belva Lockwood, Mary Elizabeth Lord, the Rev. Jesse Edward Nash Sr., Dr. Roswell Park, Ely Parker, Col. Charles Shepard, “Buffalo” Bob Smith, Elbridge Gerry Spaulding, Mary Burnett Talbert, Theodore Roosevelt and Ansley Wilcox.
“History Makers” is located in the Erie County Room on the museum’s lower level and is on view through summer 2020. For more information, call the museum at 716-873-9644; visit in person at One Museum Court, Buffalo; or online at www.buffalohistory.org.