What happened to the dioramas of Cambridge that used to be in Widener?
The popular dioramas (also known as the Pitman Models) are miniature models depicting Cambridge in 1667, 1775 and 1936 that were displayed in Widener from 1947 to 2004. Unfortunately, they had to be removed from their location behind the main staircase of Widener during the Widener renovation of the early 2000s. The 1936 diorama has been restored and is on display at the Harvard Management Company, 600 Atlantic Ave. #1500, Boston. The other two are in need of significant restoration and are currently in storage. Since they belong to the Faculty of Arts & Sciences, not the library, we do not know if there are any plans to display them again.
Some history of the dioramas is provided in the Harvard Library Bulletin, v. 1 no. 3, Autumn 1947, pp 391-393, and v. 3, no. 3 Autumn 1949, p. 448.
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