Friends of the Zeiss                                          Public Statement For

P.O. Box 1041                                                                        Board of Directors,

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15230-1041 U.S.A.                       Regional Asset District

Telephone: 412-561-7876                                                      By Glenn A. Walsh:

Electronic Mail: < >      Future Status of Historic

Internet Web Site: < >               Buhl Artifacts in Question


2007 October 29


Good evening, I am Glenn A. Walsh of 633 Royce Avenue, Mount Lebanon, Project Director of Friends of the Zeiss.


Last month, Port Authority Transit (PAT) agreed to purchase and demolish The Carnegie Science Center warehouse, for construction of a new rapid transit station.

Presently, in this building are stored a number of historic artifacts from the original Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science, including the

Zeiss II Planetarium Projector, which, prior to dismantling in 2002, was the oldest operable major planetarium projector in the world !!!


Originally, these artifacts were to be displayed or used in an expansion of The Carnegie Science Center. In fact, Science Center officials promised that the

Zeiss Projector would be displayed by the end of 2005. Following cancellation of the original expansion project, they said the Zeiss Projector would

be displayed by the end of 2006. Neither deadline has been met, with very little comment from Science Center officials.


In an October 8 response to my letter of concern regarding the impending warehouse demolition, Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh President David Hillenbrand

said that “delay and changes in our expansion project” resulted in no action to display the artifacts. However, he also stated that the artifacts would be moved

to another storage facility, “until such time as we determine their ultimate disposition.”


Those last few words are very troubling. The “ultimate disposition” of the artifacts was spelled-out in the Memoranda of Understanding with the City as display

in the Science Center. We are quite concerned that the Science Center may wish another “disposition” of the artifacts.


The City has given the Science Center the privilege to display these artifacts. If the Science Center does not wish to display them, then they should be returned

to the original Buhl Planetarium building, the only place where they could actually be used to teach science, and teach science to children visiting the Children’s

Museum. If they are neither displayed in the Science Center, nor used in the Children’s Museum, we strongly fear that this important Pittsburgh history could be

lost forever.


We ask that you use your influence to insure that these important Pittsburgh artifacts are returned to the original Buhl Planetarium building, or at least displayed

in the new building expansion planned by the Science Center. Use or display of these artifacts at the Children’s Museum or the Science Center are the only

reasonable alternatives; indefinite warehouse storage is completely unacceptable!


Thank you.