A Park for the Nation

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  • Newspaper article describing the new National Zoological Park being established by the Smithsonian Institution on more than 166 acres of property on the outskirts of the capital. The park promised to be "a great affair -- not only a zoological garden on a scientific and educational basis, but also a superb recreation ground for visitors to the national capital." In its previous session the U.S. Congress had appropriated $200,000 to buy land for the park, and another appropriation was being requested for road and building construction; it was noted, however, that no money was being sought for the purchase of animals to populate the park.
  • Animals from the Smithsonian Zoo would form the basis of the collection, the National Museum would give the zoo live birds and mammals collected by its agents, and the Smithsonian would then respond in turn by providing dead specimens to the museum; further additions to the zoo's collection would come from the American citizenry, which was being urged to make its own donations to the public park. Writing in the flowery language of the day, the correspondent describes the "garden of animals" which will be on display, including the buffalo and other scarce species, and declares with certainty that within a year "this superb playground will contain the finest collection of North American animals ever got together."


  • United States National Museum
  • United States Congress
  • National Zoological Park (U.S.)


Smithsonian Institution History Bibliography


Article is datelined "Washington, D.C., January 24 [1890]."

Contained within

St. Louis Daily Globe-Democrat (Newspaper)

Contact information

Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Institution Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20024-2520, SIHistory@si.edu


January 26, 1890


  • Animals
  • Zoos
  • American bison
  • National Zoological Park (U.S.)
  • Buffaloes
  • National Zoological Park (U.S.)--Early History
  • Buffalo

Physical description

p. 28, Columns 1 & 2

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