Buffalo Barn at the National Zoo, 1891

ID: 9038 or MAH-9038

Creator: Bell, C.M

Form/Genre: Photographic print

Date: 1891

Citation: Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 95, Box 35, Folder: 8

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View of the Buffalo Barn, the first house constructed at the National Zoological Park on April 15, 1891, soon after its completion. Designed by Boston architect William Ralph Emerson, the rough-hewn log house evoked the cabins of the American West -- an appropriate association given the inhabitants: buffalo and elk, quintessentially North American animals. Paddocks were added for the elk soon after construction; because of the limited appropriation, they were not afforded a house of their own.


  • National Zoological Park (U.S.)
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Historic Images of the Smithsonian


Source: AR 1891: 49. See also OAHP Newsletter; and neg. 9039. The back of the photo says it was taken on April 15, 1891, at 11 a.m.

Contained within

Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 95, Box 35, Folder: 8

Contact information

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



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  • Buffalo Barn
  • Zoos


  • Photographic print
  • Exterior

ID Number

9038 or MAH-9038

Physical description

Color: Black and White; Size: 10w x 8h; Type of Image: Exterior; Medium: Photographic print

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