Welcome back! New-York Historical is now open for visitors. Book your timed-entry tickets. And reserve separate, timed-entry tickets for our free, outdoor exhibition Hope Wanted in the rear courtyard.

Summer Series
The Magic Lantern: The Grandfather of Cinema
Summer of Magic
Summer of Magic
Joel Schlemowitz
Fri, August 24th, 2018 |
5:00 pm to 8:00 pm

Free Program


Before film, there was the magic lantern! Used in intimate parlors as a children’s toy as well as in lecture halls and Vaudeville theaters, the spectral, glowing images of the lantern slide could transport viewers to distant lands, conjure ghosts and spirits, or simply amuse with silly jokes. 

Expert Joel Schlemowitz will be stationed at the Museum to demonstrate various techniques, such as dissolving views, double-pane moving “slip slides,” and hand-cranked gear-work moving lantern slides. Drop by any time from 5–8 pm to examine the projection equipment and painted glass slides used by Victorian lanternists to produce apparitions and illustrate stories visually for edification and entertainment. 

Joel Schlemowitz is an antique collector, artist, and filmmaker

Program is free after 6 pm with Pay-as-you-wish Friday Night


Creative: Tronvig Group