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Interpreting the Evidence

Dedication Parade, New York State Education Building, Albany, 1912

  • Documents in this Activity:
  • Historical Eras:

    Turn of the Century and WWI (1890 - 1930)

  • Thinking Skill:

    Historical Analysis & Interpretation

  • Grade Level:

    Lower Elementary
    Upper Elementary
    Middle School
    High School
    College University

  • Topics:


  • Primary Source Types:


  • Regions:

    Capital District
    New York State

  • Creator:

    NYS Archives Partnership Trust Education Team

  1. Load Dedication Parade, New York State Education Building, Albany, 1912 in Main Image Viewer

Suggested Teaching Instructions

Document Description
Photograph of the dedication parade for the new New York State Education Building, Albany, New York, October 17, 1912.
Historical Context
The New York State Education Building is located across the street from the Capitol Building in Albany.  Construction of the Education Building was supposed to be complete by January 1911, but took longer than anticipated.  This delay was unfortunate, because in March 1911 the New York State Capitol had a fire, and many of the old documents that would have been moved to this new building were burned.

The dedication ceremony for the Education Building was celebrated in October 1912.
This impressive building with its thirty-six columns across the front was designed to represent a temple to education.  Walking by the Education Building, one is drawn not only to the columns but to two statues with lamps that frame the front steps.  These statues depict children reading and writing, perfect pieces of art for the Education Building.

For more than sixty years, the Education building was home to the State Museum and State Library.  However, due to the lack of space, the State Museum moved to the newly-constructed Cultural Education Center in 1976, and the State Library moved to the same building in 1978.

Essential Question
How is architecture influenced by culture?
Check for Understanding
Describe the scene in the photograph and explain the influence of culture on the design of this structure.
Historical Challenges
How was the design for this building chosen? Who was the architect?
Interdisciplinary Connections
Science: How do columns support a building? Experiment with columns made out of paper or other materials at hand. How large of an object can you support with your columns?