The institute's brick building is as emblematic of its moment of construction as Darwin's Origin of Species (1859) was in raising a curtain on the scientific revolution while most of the culture was looking backward. The iconic gesture of the handsome wood Doric portico at the entrance refers to the fast vanishing classical world, while the plain, nearly industrial, structure with its two-story hall plan, not unlike a typical urban Methodist church, bespoke the forces for change that would characterize the future. The first floor accommodates work space and a small museum of natural history curiosities, while the second story is occupied by a large auditorium where the rapidly changing scientific information of the new age could be communicated. In some respects it is a diminutive version of the Wagner Free Institute of Science in Philadelphia ( PH128).
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Delaware County Institute for Science
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