Pennsylvania May 18, 2016
This Underrated Museum Just Might Be The Most Beautiful Place In Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania has plenty of fantastic museums, from the Benjamin Franklin in Philadelphia to the Carnegie Museums of Natural History and Art in Pittsburgh. There are many smaller museums scattered throughout the state, as well, that pay homage to our local history and culture. The most gorgeous of these is the Mercer Museum in Doylestown.
The Mercer Museum is one of three buildings that pay tribute to the life of Henry Mercer, a local anthropologist who lived during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. He dedicated himself to preserving artifacts from pre-industrial civilization. When you approach the Mercer Museum, you will notice its unique architecture; Mercer built it using a poured-in concrete method.
In addition to constructing his museum in this unique architectural style, Mercer also constructed his home - Fonthill Castle - and the Moravian Pottery and Tile Works using this method.
The nearby Fonthill Castle is a popular destination for visitors as well; as you can see from the previous two photographs, it is striking. However, our focus today is on the Mercer Museum and all of the treasures that lie within.
Some refer to the hodge-podge style of ornamentation within the museum as a "fun house" effect, due to the various items that are hung from the walls and ceilings. The six-story tall museum was completed in 1916 and has held Mercer's fabulous collection ever since. In the central area, you will find large items such as a whale boat and a carriage.
In the museum's many rooms you will find collections of smaller items, fitting into almost every classification imaginable. Only a man as passionate and knowledgeable as Henry Mercer could have assembled such a thorough and fascinating smorgasbord of pre-industrial artifacts. In fact, the collection is considered the most complete of its kind in the entire country.
Pictured here is the Columbus Room, one of the museum's many rooms. Throughout the building, you will also notice intricate tile work from the Moravian Pottery and Tile Works.
More than 40,000 items line 55 individual rooms within the museum. Good luck taking it all in - you definitely will not get bored.
This video will tell you more about Henry Mercer, the man behind this incredible place.
Have you been here? Do you plan to go? Tag a friend who you’d like to join you.