On a sunny Sunday morning in Buffalo who knew I would find myself in the basement of the Buffalo History Museum playing with model trains? My recent visits to Buffalo have been very surprising, revealing a city undergoing a transformation, with lots of new exciting developments, but despite all this change there are still some amazing buildings remaining from its history including this one!
Buffalo History Museum – Original Building
The Buffalo History Museum is located in the original building constructed in 1901 as the New York State pavilion for the Pan American Exposition. Even in 1901 the building was meant to be housed as a museum and today with two additional wings built on the original building it still stands magnificently as the sole surviving structure from the exposition.
Meet the Press
Buffalonians are quite excited that this exhibit an office re-creation of Buffalo native Tim Russert’s office has arrived home, they even have a hashtag to celebrate #AtHomeAtLast. The Inside Tim Russert’s Office: If it’s Sunday it’s “Meet the Press” exhibit was on display in Washington for four years and now the contents of his office can be seen here. Photos, papers, books and wall signs are all piled in this amazing office display.
History buffs will love wandering the many displays in the three story museum showcasing items from Buffalo’s pioneers, the transportation age and even New York made inventions you may not know come from the region like the Kazoo and the pacemaker. There were interactive displays showcasing some of the products made in the plants of some of the big corporations who still call Buffalo their home.
The regions diverse ethnic and cultural traditions from various groups who made the Buffalo region their home are also on display, with stories, photos and artifacts from immigrant Germans, Poles, Italians and more.
Buffalo Fantasy Model Train Display
On the lower level of the Museum is the amazing model train display which was created as a fantasy tribute to the Buffalo Erie County region in the early 1900s. The display includes 3 running old model trains amongst tiny buildings from Buffalo’s history including the famous Williamsville Mill.
There are more than 200 feet of track and some pretty inspired recreations of landscapes and buildings including a model sized version of the Erie Canal.
No detail was too small including a 1900s version of the Buffalo railway station and some of the cities early businesses.
Make sure you call ahead and find out when the trains are running as they preserve the power of these old model trains and normally only run them when volunteers are present. The volunteers are happy to share their knowledge of Buffalo’s time in the early 1900s and can point out all the amazing features including this recreation of the Erie County Fair.
If you have time be sure to check out the grounds surrounding the museum building. Located alongside Deleware Park and Mirror Lake there are some beautiful paths and walkways which even on a cold winter day took my breathe away. I can’t wait to visit The Buffalo Museum again in spring when the Japanese gardens are blooming!
Have a favourite spot in Buffalo? I’d love to hear your favourite Buffalo spots, share them in the comments below and maybe I will see them during my next visit!
Travel assistance provided by Visit Buffalo Niagara, however the opinions expressed in this post are my own.