Title: Start here : Henry Morrison Flagler Museum, Palm Beach Florida
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00020098/00002
 Material Information
Title: Start here : Henry Morrison Flagler Museum, Palm Beach Florida
Physical Description: Book
Language: English
Creator: Henry Morrison Flagler Museum
Publication Date: 2005
Copyright Date: 2005
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00020098
Volume ID: VID00002
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.

Full Text


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Ii' M E
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Start here to learn about early Florida, when Henry
Flagler's railroads and luxury hotels established
tourism and agriculture as the foundation of Florida's

Start here to enjoy one of America's most beautiful
homes and Florida's first museum.

Start here to discover the Gilded Age, the most
fascinating period in American history.

Everything else you see and do in Florida will make
more sense if you start by visiting the Flagler Museum.

Henry Flagler (1830-1913)

W hitehall was the winter home of
Henry Flagler, a leading figure of
America's Gilded Age. Flagler was a
founding partner of Standard Oil, the
most profitable corporation in history, and he was the earliest and most
important developer of Florida. In fact, it would not be an
exaggeration to say that Henry Flagler literally invented modern
Florida. Flagler's Florida East Coast Railway linked the entire east
coast of Florida from Jacksonville to Key West. The series of luxury
hotels Flagler built along Florida's east coast and the two million
acres of land he developed, established agriculture and tourism as the
foundation of Florida's economy during the last 100 years.

enry Flagler commissioned architects John CarrBre and Thomas
Hastings to design Whitehall, a 55-room Beaux Arts estate, as a
wedding present for his wife and Florida's first museum. Carrere and
Hastings designed Flagler's Hotel Ponce de Leon in St. Augustine and

many other iconic Gilded Age landmarks, including the New York
Public Library, the offices of the Senate and House of Representatives
in Washington, D.C., the New York Fifth Avenue mansion of Henry
Clay Frick, and the Standard Oil office building in New York.

The New York design firm of Pottier and Stymus was selected to
create the interiors of Whitehall. In typical Gilded Age fashion,
they designed the rooms in period styles such as Louis XIV, Louis XV, and
Italian Renaissance. Elements of earlier Western cultures were melded
with the latest in American technology. Nineteenth century American
innovations such as steel beam construction and cast plaster ceilings
allowed workers to complete Whitehall in only 18 months. The
technology developed during the Gilded Age made possible the
rapid construction of such a large and elaborate estate, while

technological advances such as indoor plumbing, central heat,
and electric lighting made Whitehall the new benchmark of
gracious living.

When Whitehall was completed in 1902, the New York
Herald proclaimed it "more wonderful than any palace in
Europe, grander and more magnificent than any other private
d -llhng in the world." The Flaglers used the home as a winter
retreat from 1902 until Henry Flagler's death in 1913. In 1960,
Whitehall was opened to the public as the Henry Morrison Flagler
Museum. Whitehall has undergone extensive restoration, returning
it to its original splendor. The Flagler Kenan Pavilion, completed in
2005, was built in the style of a 19th century Beaux Arts railway

palace and houses Henry Flagler's private railcar, No. 91.
Accredited by the American Association of Museums and
designated a National Historic Landmark, the Flagler Museum invites
visitors to experience the splendor of the Gilded Age while
learning more about Henry Flagler and this fascinating period in
American history.



ilded Age businessmen, like Henry Flagler, grew phenomenally
wealthy developing new technologies that changed the daily
lives of Americans. Because most of these
titans of industry were self-made men, they
were inclined to build institutions and foun-
dations that provided opportunities for all
Americans to improve their lives through
hard work and education. Many Gilded Age
leaders believed that their obligation to ele-
vate and inspire society extended even to
the design and construction of their homes.
Public museums, so common today, were not

at all common during the
Gilded Age. When Henry
Flagler built a winter retreat
in Palm Beach as a wedding
present for his wife, Mary Lily
Kenan Flagler, he chose archi-
tects who understood well
the value of building a house
that was both home and museum.

As Andrew Carnegie said, "It is well, nay essential, for the
progress of the race that the houses of some should be homes
for all that is highest and best in literature and the arts." Building the
kind of house described by Carnegie was one way that Gilded Age
leaders sought to inspire and educate the public. They made their
houses homes for the works of the Greek Muses of arts and
literature literally museums. As John Carr re, V. ha.lhall'. chief
architect, said, "The amount of art education which a building can
disseminate is far beyond what we realize."


Florida's First Museum

The Flagler Museum is open year round, Tuesday through Satur-
day, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. The Museum is
closed Mondays, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and New Year's
Day. The entire first floor of the Museum, the Museum grounds, and
the Flagler Kenan Pavilion are wheelchair accessible. Strollers, day-
packs, and large bags are not permitted on the Museum grounds. For
more information, call (561) 655-2833 or visit www.flaglermuseum.us.

From 1-95 or the Florida Turnpike:

Take Exit 70 from 1-95, or Exit 99 from the Florida Turnpike, and
drive East on Okeechobee Boulevard (about 3 miles or six miles
respectively) through West Palm Beach and cross the bridge over
the Intracoastal Waterway into Palm Beach and onto Royal Palm
Way. Make a left turn at the first stop light onto Cocoanut Row,
continue about four blocks and the Museum parking area will be on
the left side of the street.

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Tours and Exhibits

V visitors to the Flagler Museum have
a choice of three tour options: a
narrated audio tour, a self-guide
brochure, or a docent-led tour
(available twice daily at 11 a.m. and 2
p.m.). In addition to touring
Whitehall, during the fall and winter
months visitors may explore the
Flagler Museum's changing exhibit
gallery, which features temporary
exhibits on topics related to Florida
history and America's Gilded Age.
There are also permanent exhibits on the history of Henry Flagler's
life and career and the Museum's extensive lace collection. The
Flagler Kenan Pavilion, designed in the style of a 19th century Beaux
Arts railway palace, houses Henry Flagler's private railcar, No. 91,
and is open to visitors year round.

Museum Store and Caf6
The Museum Store stocks an extensive collection of books about
the Gilded Age and a variety of Flagler Museum proprietary
products, plus hundreds of
other items illustrative of
America's Gilded Age. The
Museum's Pavilion Caf6 is
open Thanksgiving week-
end until the Saturday of
Easter weekend. Located in
the Flagler Kenan Pavilion,
the Cafe serves a Gilded
Age style tea noon to
3 p.m. and features an abundant array of delicacies and refreshments
reminiscent of Gilded Age elegance.

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