"Imagine all the people living life in peace. You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one.
I hope someday you'll join us, and the world will be as one. "
~John Lennon


Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Czech Museum

One of the many displays in the museum.

An elaborate hat with beautiful handiwork.

The new museum.

The old building on blocks.
We visited several museums during the two week road trip through Iowa. Small museums and some very large ones too. The National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library in Cedar Rapids IA is beautiful. It is located in Czech Village so there are shops and restaurants within walking distance of the museum where more Czech sights and  aromas invite passersby to stop and check it out.

A few years ago a horrendous flood damaged much of that part of Iowa and there are signs of continuing rehab and refurbish, as well as many people mentioning the flood in conversation. It made an impact on all their lives.

The Czech Museum was on lower ground and the muddy waters thoroughly damaged the museum and all the books. The books are being slowly and meticulously restored by professionals using modern techniques. The building was emptied, lifted up on blocks and moved to the current location across the street from where it was, and stands majestically on the hill looking down on the scene of the flood damage. We watched an interesting movie of the process of the huge undertaking of the move. The Czech community came together to work quickly and efficiently in the effort to salvage the bones of the building, move it to higher ground, rebuild and expand. The "new" museum has been open over a year and is absolutely beautiful. The community has come a long way from the humble beginnings of Czech immigrants.

Many of my neighbors and friends are Czech, which made the excursion to the museum even more interesting. Of course I bought a souvenir tee shirt there and enjoy remembering my time there every time I wear the shirt.


10 comments:

Brian Miller said...

pretty cool how they are coming together to save a bit of their history...it speaks to its importance...that bonnet is pretty amazing too...elaborate...

DJan said...

Lovely museum, CiCi. Glad to hear it's been replaced and better than ever! :-)

Rock Chef said...

I remember the first time I saw a building being moved on wheels - it was an old silent movie and the house ended up being smashed by a train... Coming from a town of brick and concrete buildings I thought this was amazing.

R. J. said...

I've been following your road trip with great interest. It is amazing to consider how many unique places can be found off the beaten path throughout this country. It would be fun to jump in the car and drive across the country seeing those places. I enjoyed the TV series "On the Road" done by Charles Kuralt on CBS about his travels around the U.S.

Adam said...

cool museum

Ms. A said...

That IS some beautiful handiwork and a huge museum. Glad they have been able to salvage, move, rebuild and expand!

bill lisleman said...

I been to Cedar Rapids on business in the past. Did not see the museum but I enjoyed the town.

Stickup Artist said...

When seeing a collection such as this, I am reminded of how we are losing so much history, heritage, crafts, and uniqueness with our corporatized homogenous malls overtaking us from sea to shining sea. It's cool you bought a t-shirt to support their efforts to keep their culture alive.

Abby said...

How nice that the museum lovers saved that museum! When I was a kid, a local church was moved in a similar way - quite a project!

You going to show us your t-shirt??

Unknown Mami said...

I'm surprised that it is even possible to restore the books. That's pretty amazing.