Blueprints and design have just been completed for a visitors’ center dedicated to the life and artifacts of Louis Armstrong, according to Michael Cogswell, director of the Armstrong House and Museum, in Corona, Queens. The center will take a year and a half to build, and will sit across the street from the three-story brick house on 107th Street, which has been open to the public since 2003.
It will contain Armstrong’s copious collection of personal artifacts, which for reasons of space and preservation has mostly been housed at the Benjamin S. Rosenthal Library at Queens College, several miles away. The collection includes 20 linear feet of letters and papers (Armstrong was an enthusiastic correspondent, even with fans he’d never met), trumpets, photographs and scrapbooks, more than 700 reel-to-reel tapes whose boxes he decorated with colorful collages and a chunk of the banister from the Colored Waifs’ Home for Boys in New Orleans, where he lived in 1913 and 1914. Since last Wednesday, much of the astonishing material has been viewable at the Museum’s Web site, louisarmstronghouse.org.
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
By BEN RATLIFF
Labels: louis armstrong