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“Niagara Science Museum seen by a historian.”
Review of Niagara Science Museum - CLOSED

Niagara Science Museum
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Owner description: Niagara Science Museum is located in the heart of, once vibrant, North end industrial area of Niagara Fall.
Niagara Falls
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Niagara Science Museum seen by a historian.”
Reviewed 18 March 2009

I recently visited the Niagara Science Museum and found it to be an exciting place. Nick Dalacu has put together an amazing collection of instruments and equipment that span decades of our industrial past. Industry was the driving force of the City of Niagara Falls for over 100 years and Nick has chosen a very historic building to house his museum. The site is the former National Carbon office building of Union Carbide. The company was founded in 1896 in Niagara Falls and it was Union Carbide’s history that first brought me to Nick Dalacu. I am the City Historian of Niagara Falls, New York, and I have done considerable research on the early industrial development related to hydropower at Niagara. Additionally, my wife and I run a B&B in the National Register designated James G. Marshall House (Park Place B&B). James G. Marshall was an early industrialist, inventor and one of the founders of Union Carbide. He later went on to run all of Union Carbide’s North American facilities. Nick and I believe that he had an office in what is now the Niagara Science Museum building. The building is located in an area of the City where major industrial development occurred throughout the 20th Century. Some active plants remain, but what intrigues me most are the “ghosts” of the past that can be found there. Near the site is an amazingly beautiful ruin that once housed a large part of Union Carbide’s activity. Being in that neighborhood makes one feel the energy that once drove the City. You can almost hear the machines and the furnaces that fueled the City’s economy for more than a century.
I have followed Nick’s work on the museum from the very beginning and I really like what has developed. The exhibits are arranged in semi-enclosed spaces that allow for a focus on what is happening while still experiencing the museum as a whole. There is even an operating printing machine that once belonged to a much respected printing company in the City. For decades we locals affectionately called it “the Gutenberg”, but it is truly a wonderful operating antique. That is something that can be said of much of the museum’s displays: they operate for you to understand what they did, even including a demonstration laboratory.
One cannot speak of the Niagara Science Museum without mentioning Nick Dalacu. Inventor, professor, thinker, lover of history...all of this is Nick and yet it does not explain the passion he has for science: the science of both ‘then’ and ‘now’. Nick has made the development of the Niagara Science Museum a cherished goal in his life and I believe that all of us can benefit by visiting the result of this passion. I look forward to going back and if you want to really understand the history of our City, I believe that you should put this on your lists of ‘musts’ during a visit to Niagara.

1 Thank CityHistorian
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

46 reviews from our community

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Niagara Falls
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Past performances are indications of future results: Niagara Science Museum”
Reviewed 16 March 2009

In a word, “Fascinating.”

It is said that, "Success is the progressive realization of a worthwhile dream", and with scientist Nick Dalacu, a Romanian immigrant into Canada, developing his solar cell manufacturing plant in Niagara Falls, USA, and then developing the Niagara Science Museum (NSM) on the plant's campus, a worthwhile dream for both he and the region is indeed being realized.

Though still in its infancy, NSM promises to be a site in the city that will hold the most curious minds for hours. With an array of instruments and devices upon which today's technologies are built -- set up in demonstrative modules -- the average guy, or science-minded gal, will spend more time there than they would in a year's-worth of visits to a Home Depot store.

For me, in watching Dalacu's project grow, it was like being in the mountains and watching an eaglet break through its shell and seeing daylight for the first time: the metamorphosis of the old National Carbon Company (pre-cursor to Union Carbide) headquarters’ building into a viable tribute to the industrial past was indeed a wonderfully satisfying event. Already I can see it take flight into a major addition to the region’s array of interests to both the tourist and the student, and I will both watch it soar into the azure heights of success and will be chilled with the same excitement that I feel when I watch an eagle rise upon the invisible eddies of warm air and float above the green canopies below. There upon staring, the past, the present and the future become one.

Because of the fact that the ‘new past’ begins today, Niagara Science Museum is, and will continue, adding new displays as it catches up with modern technology; so much so that it will continue to be a “must see” venue on any subsequent visit to Niagara Falls. Today was built upon the successes of yesterday, and Dalacu has done well in chronicling those successes. This old sailor and world traveler believes that you can reasonably build your future successful visits to Niagara Falls, and the Niagara Science Museum, on what he has done.

2 Thank OS2good2BTrue
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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