Sunday, September 02, 2012

Roads Less Traveled

Today's post is mostly a photo journey for ya'll but I'll tell you a little about what you are seeing too!  A couple of weeks ago Jack and I went on a day trip to northeastern Alabama to the Anniston Museum of Natural History and the Berman Museum, which is just next door.  I had been here back when I was in college and remembered it as a great place but that was a loooong time ago and wanted to see it again.  We were not disappointed.  The first photos here are at the Berman.  This is a 2-story museum that houses a collection that was originally entirely private.  You can read about it here.  Mr. and Mrs. Berman travelled the world collecting; he loved weapons and similarly related objects and she collected art.  Upon their death the entire collection was donated to the city of Anniston.  I believe their Remington collection is one of the largest collected privately.

Of course, Jack loved Mr. Berman's gun collection, which was impressive I must admit.  This is just a minor speck of what they had.  The man actually owned a Gatling gun.  Even if you don't care much for weapons it was still interesting and they had a lot of other period pieces and information.

Of course, I loved the sculpture!

I can't help but wonder about the people that actually wore this stuff once upon a time.  Was it just for show or did they actually fight in it?  Who were they?  Did they die young?

There was some beautiful pieces; not what I was expecting.

On the same floor was Mrs. Berman's Asian art collection.  I loved this display unit for small jade carvings.  Sorry that some of the pictures are blurry.  Most museums are kinda dark you know and I didn't want to use a flash..

This silver service that belonged to Adolf Hitler, and he actually used it regularly, was one of the creepier items, in my opinion.  Berman also collected a number of things from Mussolini.  There was a large collection of WWII weaponry that went along with these items.  It made me kinda sad to see how much effort we all have put into murdering each other over the centuries.

Just one piece from the Asian collection.  And yes, one of her boobs is bigger than the other.  I forget the symbolism with that.

These pictures were taken at the Museum of Natural History, naturally!   Their dinosaur exhibit was pretty darn cool.  They had a life size pterodactyl flying over head too.

It went on into exhibits about the natural world, which was interesting.  This was an actual tree section impaled with steel from the tornadoes we had a couple of years that were so bad.  If you remember, I wrote about finding a lot of debris on my land which had been blown up from Tuscaloosa.

The African area.  I thought they did a nice job of explaining how and why these animals were collected over the years and that we should respect the displays as an educational tool for the preservation of their species.  All the animals taken were either sick or injured already or of an overly abundant herd etc.  Most all of them were very old also (no animals were taken in recent history), so there was another reason to treat the displays with care.

Full size African elephant.  I remember this elephant from when I was a child actually.

They also had some wonderful botanical gardens and this blue orchid I had never seen before.  Beautiful!

I would love to have an area like this at my house.

It was very relaxing and a lovely place to sit.  Many of the ferns they had on display are native types that grow all over my land.

I liked this sculpture spitting water!  I might do a mini version of this behind the house.  Well, I mean the whole pool thing, not necessarily the sculpture.

The pool was kinda shallow but better to see the fishies!

  More ferns!

Well, hope you enjoyed your tour!  I'll be back soon!


Caroline said...

Holy smokes! there is a little of everything to look at, how neat. I love museums like that, Ma Nature and the artistry of human fingers create amazing things.

Island Rider said...

My grandfather was born in Anniston. I wonder if my mom knows there is so much to see there. So are you coming to see us in October? Did I read you had chosen Longboat Key? If so, there are a couple of museums here you will enjoy. And of course some friends who are anxious to see you.

DavidandDarcy Cobb said...

The Annistion Museum Is a great place to visit. We have been there many times.About 10 years ago we lived less than a mile from it,on hwy 431.

Jenn said...

Armor - they did fight in it, but only on horse. Each knight had a squire to help him get encumbered with all that metal and then up onto said horse. Horses were draft style to haul all that weight.

It's engineered so that all blows will slide off. Notice those angles and the lack of seams in any area a sword or lance to catch on.

Armor was great against arrows, until it encountered the English longbow, and then the crossbow, both of which could pierce it from a safe distance.

You could get wounded just falling off your horse.

And. Combat is always ugly, no matter what era.

40 was considered old age back then. If the plague didn't get you, malnutrition and whatnot would.

edifice rex said...

Hey Caroline! yeah, it was a great way to spend the day. There were even several hiking trails but it was raining so we didn't get to do those.

Hey IR! Yes, we are definitely looking at Longboat and the surrounding area and yeah, we hope to see ya'll down there somewhere! We, or I should say Jack, has not finalized all the reservations yet but I'll let ya'll know when we know!

Hey D&D! that's interesting because about 10 or 11 years ago I was working in Anniston at NEARMC; we added that Women's Center onto the hospital. And, one of the superintendents for my old company was a Cobb. But he lived in Harpersville.

Hey Jenn! Oh yeah, I have actually studied a lot about that sorta thing; I used to be quite fascinated with the Medieval eras. I guess I meant, I wonder if those *particular* suits of armor were ever worn in battle, you know. Did someone use this sword, in this case, to kill someone? That sort of thing. I guess I'm morbid that way. lol! I just wonder about the history of the specific pieces.