George Gustav Heye Center

Last updated
The George Gustav Heye Center,
National Museum of the American Indian
USA New York City location map.svg
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Location in Manhattan
Location1 Bowling Green, Manhattan, New York, United States
Coordinates 40°42′15″N74°00′50″W / 40.704294°N 74.013773°W / 40.704294; -74.013773
Director Kevin Gover
Public transit access New York City Bus : M9, M15, M15 SBS, M20, M55
New York City Subway : NYCS-bull-trans-4.svg NYCS-bull-trans-5.svg trains at Bowling Green or NYCS-bull-trans-1.svg NYCS-bull-trans-N.svg NYCS-bull-trans-R.svg NYCS-bull-trans-W.svg trains at South Ferry – Whitehall Street
Website George Gustav Heye Center
1922 building Negative (4108770187).jpg
1922 building

The George Gustav Heye Center is a branch of the National Museum of the American Indian in Manhattan, New York City. [1] The museum is part of the Smithsonian Institution. The Center features contemporary and historical exhibits of art and artifacts by and about Native Americans.

National Museum of the American Indian museum in Washington, D.C.

The National Museum of the American Indian is part of the Smithsonian Institution and is committed to advancing knowledge and understanding of the Native cultures of the Western Hemisphere—past, present, and future—through partnership with Native people and others. The museum works to support the continuance of culture, traditional values, and transitions in contemporary Native life. It has three facilities: the National Museum of the American Indian on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., which opened on September 21, 2004, on Fourth Street and Independence Avenue, Southwest; the George Gustav Heye Center, a permanent museum in New York City; and the Cultural Resources Center, a research and collections facility in Suitland, Maryland. The foundations for the present collections were first assembled in the former Museum of the American Indian in New York City, which was established in 1916, and which became part of the Smithsonian in 1990.

Manhattan Borough in New York City and county in New York, United States

Manhattan, often referred to locally as the City, is the most densely populated of the five boroughs of New York City and its economic and administrative center, cultural identifier, and historical birthplace. The borough is coextensive with New York County, one of the original counties of the U.S. state of New York. The borough consists mostly of Manhattan Island, bounded by the Hudson, East, and Harlem rivers; several small adjacent islands; and Marble Hill, a small neighborhood now on the U.S. mainland, physically connected to the Bronx and separated from the rest of Manhattan by the Harlem River. Manhattan Island is divided into three informally bounded components, each aligned with the borough's long axis: Lower, Midtown, and Upper Manhattan.

New York City Largest city in the United States

The City of New York, usually called either New York City (NYC) or simply New York (NY), is the most populous city in the United States. With an estimated 2017 population of 8,622,698 distributed over a land area of about 302.6 square miles (784 km2), New York is also the most densely populated major city in the United States. Located at the southern tip of the state of New York, the city is the center of the New York metropolitan area, the largest metropolitan area in the world by urban landmass and one of the world's most populous megacities, with an estimated 20,320,876 people in its 2017 Metropolitan Statistical Area and 23,876,155 residents in its Combined Statistical Area. A global power city, New York City has been described as the cultural, financial, and media capital of the world, and exerts a significant impact upon commerce, entertainment, research, technology, education, politics, tourism, art, fashion, and sports. The city's fast pace has inspired the term New York minute. Home to the headquarters of the United Nations, New York is an important center for international diplomacy.



The center is named for George Gustav Heye, who began collecting Native American artifacts in 1903. He founded and endowed the Museum of the American Indian in 1916, and it opened in 1922, in a building at 155th Street and Broadway, part of the Audubon Terrace complex, in the Sugar Hill neighborhood, just south of Washington Heights. [2] That museum closed in 1994 and part of the collection is now housed at the Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House on Bowling Green in Lower Manhattan. The Beaux Arts-style building, designed by architect Cass Gilbert, was completed in 1907. It is a designated National Historic Landmark and a New York City landmark. The center’s exhibition and public access areas total about 20,000 square feet (1,900 m2). The Heye Center offers a range of exhibitions, film and video screenings, school group programs and living culture presentations throughout the year.

George Gustav Heye collector of Native American artifacts

George Gustav Heye was a collector of Native American artifacts. His collection became the core of the National Museum of the American Indian.

Audubon Terrace historic district in New York City, United States of America

Audubon Terrace, also known as the Audubon Terrace Historic District, is a landmark complex of eight early-20th century Beaux Arts/American Renaissance buildings located on the west side of Broadway, bounded by West 155th and West 156th Streets, in the Washington Heights neighborhood of upper Manhattan, New York City. Home to several cultural institutions, the architecturally complementary buildings, which take up most of a city block, are arranged in two parallel rows facing each other across a common plaza. The complex is directly across 155th Street from Trinity Church Cemetery.

Sugar Hill, Manhattan historid district in New York City

Sugar Hill is a United States historic district in the northern part of the Hamilton Heights section of the Harlem neighborhood of Manhattan, New York City. It is roughly bounded by West 155th Street to the north, West 145th Street to the south, Edgecombe Avenue to the east, and Amsterdam Avenue to the west. The equivalent New York City Historic Districts are:


The permanent collection of the Heye Center is called Infinity of Nations, and is designed to show the scope of the Smithsonian's collection. Organized by geographic regions (including Central and South America), the exhibit displays over 700 items and crosses the line from ethnology to art. [3] [4] Multimedia interactions include audio and video, and feature commentary by historians on specific objects. The rotunda is frequently used as a performance space, and features murals reflecting the history of the building, done by Reginald Marsh. Other galleries include the Photography Gallery, Special Exhibit Galleries, Contemporary Galleries, the Haudenosaunee Discovery Room, the Resource Center Reference Library, a small theater (which screens daily films), and the museum store. The ground floor of the building houses the Diker Pavilion for Native Arts and Culture and the Education Center (referred to as the Tipi Room).

Reginald Marsh (artist) American painter

Reginald Marsh was an American painter, born in Paris, most notable for his depictions of life in New York City in the 1920s and 1930s. Crowded Coney Island beach scenes, popular entertainments such as vaudeville and burlesque, women, and jobless men on the Bowery are subjects that reappear throughout his work. He painted in egg tempera and in oils, and produced many watercolors, ink and ink wash drawings, and prints.

Past exhibits

Laguna Pueblo

The Laguna Pueblo is a federally recognized tribe of Native American Pueblo people in west-central New Mexico, USA. The name, Laguna, is Spanish and derives from the lake located on their reservation. Originally, this body of water was the only lake in what is now the state of New Mexico, and was formed by an ancient dam that was constructed by the Laguna people. After the Pueblo Revolt of 1680-1696, the Mission San José de la Laguna was erected by the Spanish at the old pueblo, and finished around July 4, 1699.

New Mexico State of the United States of America

New Mexico is a state in the Southwestern region of the United States of America; its capital and cultural center is Santa Fe, which was founded in 1610 as capital of Nuevo México, while its largest city is Albuquerque with its accompanying metropolitan area. It is one of the Mountain States and shares the Four Corners region with Utah, Colorado, and Arizona; its other neighboring states are Oklahoma to the northeast, Texas to the east-southeast, and the Mexican states of Chihuahua to the south and Sonora to the southwest. With a population around two million, New Mexico is the 36th state by population. With a total area of 121,592 sq mi (314,920 km2), it is the fifth-largest and sixth-least densely populated of the 50 states. Due to their geographic locations, northern and eastern New Mexico exhibit a colder, alpine climate, while western and southern New Mexico exhibit a warmer, arid climate.

Ojibwe group of indigenous peoples in North America

The Ojibwe, Ojibwa, Chippewa, or Saulteaux are an Anishinaabe people of Canada and the United States. They are one of the most numerous indigenous peoples north of the Rio Grande. In Canada, they are the second-largest First Nations population, surpassed only by the Cree. In the United States, they have the fifth-largest population among Native American peoples, surpassed in number only by the Navajo, Cherokee, Choctaw and Sioux.

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  1. "National Museum of the American Indian". Retrieved April 26, 2011.
  2. Morgan, Thomas (April 13, 1988). "A Cramped Museum Filled With Indian History". New York Times. Retrieved November 3, 2018.
  3. Cotter, Holland (November 5, 2010). "Grace and Culture Intertwined". New York Times. Retrieved May 23, 2012.
  4. "Infinity of Nations". National Museum of the American Indian. Retrieved May 7, 2015.
  5. 4Directions (2000). "A Virtual Tour of the National Museum of the American Indian Exhibitions Creation's Journey and All Roads Are Good". Smithsonian Institution. Retrieved May 24, 2012.
  6. Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian. "Weedon Island Virtual Tour". Smithsonian Institution. Retrieved May 24, 2012.