Prospect Park will be celebrating its 150th anniversary tomorrow as the Brooklyn Historical Society (BHS) and Prospect Park Alliance put on a special exhibition that will take visitors through the park’s history.
Titled The Means of a Ready Escape: Brooklyn’s Prospect Park, the show will present panels of information that detail all 585 acres of the park’s land. In addition, more than 150 artifacts will be on display including historical scrapbooks, photographs, panels, posters, and postcards. These will include Frederick Law Olmsted’s and Calvert B. Vaux’s original vision for the park, hand-drawn renderings from the 1990s of the park’s woodlands restoration, and a model of the Samuel J. and Ethel LeFrak Center at Lakeside by Tod Williams and Billie Tsien Architects, which opened in 2013.
Litchfield Villa, 1915. (Courtesy Bob Levine Collection)
Running alongside these artifacts will be a selection of pieces from the Prospect Park Alliance, Brooklyn College Library archives, Brooklyn Public Library’s Brooklyn Collection, as well as the private collection of Brooklyn resident, Bob Levine.
Visitors to The Means of a Ready Escape can learn about how sheep once used to graze on the site and how, after that, swan boats, carriage rides, lawn tennis courts, and Robert Moses’ modernist plans took their place. Now, Prospect Park is much different, as Brooklynites can testify, but this era of in-line skaters, birders, and dog-walkers is just another chapter in the park’s storied history.
The Means of a Ready Escape: Brooklyn’s Prospect Park runs through July 13, 2018. It’s located at 128 Pierrepont St., Brooklyn, New York. For more, visit the Brooklyn Historical Society’s website.
If you plan to visit the park soon, don’t miss this striking 7,000-pinwheel installation designed by Suchi Reddy.