The Berman Museum 25: American West

Where we left off: “The Berman Museum broke ground on February 4, 1995. On April 13, 1996, the Berman Museum opened its doors to the public. On July 16, 1999, Farley Berman died at age 88, leaving a museum and a legacy.”

When the museum opened to the public on April 13, 1996, it consisted of three exhibits, American WestDeadly Beauty, and Visions of Color and Light: The Paintings of Hilary Eddy. Two of these exhibits remain today – American West and Deadly Beauty.

In the first newsletter of the Berman Museum, American West is described as “sixty-six works of art and eight firearms, ranging from a “palm pistol” and Derringer to an early Gatling Gun” and featuring “vignettes of a gunmaker’s shop, an Apache and a U.S. Plains soldier, and the opening of a tavern gun fight.”

In the early 2000s, then Director Cheryl Bragg added her father’s green and red wagon to the exhibit, displaying many homegood items from the period, including the trunk of Emily C. Tyler, the daughter of Annie Scott (Anniston’s namesake) and the granddaughter of General Daniel Tyler (founder of Anniston). In March of 2018, staff constructed a Native American exhibit in American West.

One thing that has not changed in the gallery, is the display of the Berman’s Remington sculptures. The Berman Museum previously showcased only sixteen of the twenty-one original Remington designs. With the addition of three pieces in 2019, The Norther, The Bronco Buster, and The Monolithic Man, Berman Museum now showcases all of its owned Remingtons.

In addition to the Remingtons, American West also displays pieces owned by Confederate President Jefferson Davis, Emperor Maximillian of Mexico, Emperor Alexander of Russia, and King Edward VII.

Check in next month, to learn about the second of Berman Museum’s cornerstone galleries, Deadly Beauty.