Amy Catania, Executive Director of Historic Saranac Lake has announced that the Saranac Laboratory Museum has received a major grant from the Will Rogers Motion Pictures Pioneers Foundation to support exhibit renovations.
The $20,000 grant, with the possibility of a small additional grant to be announced later, will support the design and installation of two new exhibits to open in 2015. The grant also supports the production of a short film on Will Rogers Memorial Hospital.
“We are very grateful for this gift. The foundation cares deeply about Saranac Lake’s history and the important role of Will Rogers Hospital in our local history. This gift is making big changes possible for us in 2015,” said Catania.”
A new temporary exhibition of antique medical devices titled “Medical Marvels” will open in the John Black Room on June 5, 2015. The exhibit will feature artifacts on loan from Ripley’s Entertainment, Inc. and will be on display through the fall of 2016. Grants from the New York Council on the Humanities and the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation have supported the early planning and design of the exhibit in consultation with the Dittrick Medical History Museum in Cleveland, Ohio.
In the main museum space, new exhibit panels will interpret the story of the tuberculosis laboratory, its founder, Dr. E. L. Trudeau, and his work to establish Saranac Lake as a pioneer health resort. The new exhibit will include a self-guided tour with audio component. “This is a major project,” said Catania. “With our neighbor, the Hotel Saranac, being restored and reopened next year, we need to be ready for more visitors. And we are doing everything we can to offer a top notch, unique heritage tourism experience.”
Historic Saranac Lake is contracting with Jim Griebsch to produce the historical film on Will Rogers Hospital. The film will feature interviews with former patients and employees of the hospital. Caroline Welsh, Director Emerita of the Adirondack Museum, and Art and Museum Consultant, is assisting with the film and exhibits. Exhibit design is by Karen Davidson of Davidson Design, Inc.
Founded in 1980, Historic Saranac Lake is a not-for-profit architectural preservation organization that captures and presents local history from their center at the Saranac Laboratory Museum.