Theodore Roosevelt Memorial

The Museum facade from Central Park West.
© AMNH/D. Finnin

The Museum is home to New York State’s official memorial to Theodore Roosevelt, the state’s 33rd governor (1899-1900) and the nation’s 26th president (1901-1909). The two-story Theodore Roosevelt Memorial includes the Museum’s Central Park West entrance, the Theodore Roosevelt Rotunda, and the Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Hall. 

Designed in the grand Roman style by John Russell Pope, the Theodore Roosevelt Memorial was authorized by the New York State Legislature in 1924 and built between 1929 and 1935. The corner stone was laid on October 27, 1931, by Franklin D. Roosevelt, Roosevelt’s fifth cousin, who was governor of New York State at the time. 

The bas-relief sculptures flanking the façade were created in 1936 by Edward Field Sanford, Jr., and depict 18 animals, including lions, panthers, zebras, rhinoceroses, moose, grizzly bears, wolves, and deer on a 126-foot-long terrace with a bronze equestrian statue of Theodore Roosevelt by James Earle Fraser. Above the columns along a parapet wall stand four life-size sculptures of notable American explorers and naturalists: Daniel Boone, John James Audubon, William Clark, and Meriwether Lewis.

Theodore Roosevelt Park

The Museum is located in a park, originally called Manhattan Square and renamed Theodore Roosevelt Park in 1958, on the 100th anniversary of Roosevelt’s birth.

DF_120912_5820 TR Park obeliskCropDL

The Nobel Monument, an obelisk located in the northwest section of the park, is inscribed with the names of American Nobel Prize winners, starting with Roosevelt’s in 1906. Just west of the entrance to the Rose Center for Earth and Space is the Bull Moose Dog Run, a nod to the Bull Moose Progressive Party for which TR ran for president in 1912.

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