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September 18, 2023

buffalo at the Prospect Park Zoo
Prospect Park Buffalo, Daniel Berry Austin photograph collection, Brooklyn Museum/Brooklyn Public Library, Center for Brooklyn History

Today's Photo of the Week is from the Daniel Berry Austin collection. Austin was an amateur photographer whose subjects often included farms and landscapes. This photo, of one of the buffalo's at the Prospect Park Zoo, was taken in 1902. The Prospect Park Zoo opened in 1890. At the time it was known as The Menagrie. Of the original facilities in the park, the Deer Paddock, located near the present Carousel, was converted into a meadow and the deer were moved to the new Menagerie. The Menagerie continued to accrue animals in the first decades of the 20th century. These were generally donated by prominent individuals and institutions and formed a varied collection of specimens both native to North America and other regions of the world. In 1916 a two-story brick building was opened in the Menagerie to house monkeys, some small mammals, and several birds. An elephant house in the zoo was announced in 1930 though it's heating system was not added till 1932.

Interested in seeing more photos from CBH’s collections? Visit our online image gallery, which includes a selection of our images, or the digital collections portal at Brooklyn Public Library. We welcome appointments to research our entire collection of images, archives, maps, and special collections. Our reference staff is available to help with your research! You can reach us at [email protected].

This blog post reflects the opinions of the author and does not necessarily represent the views of Brooklyn Public Library.

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