Many of us who were living in Manhattan on September 11, 2001, feel no urgent need to visit the 9/11 Memorial Museum that opened last month. In fact, a neighbor of mine in New Jersey whose son perished in the attacks has literally not gone into Manhattan since (although it’s a 45-minute train commute made by thousands of people every day). I have not made it to the Museum yet but my husband, Tim Baker, did last week. “I didn’t feel compelled to go,” he says. “What more about 9/11 did I need to know or see? Wendy and I lived through it, and I worked on The New York Times’ picture desk for the one-year anniversary edition on the attacks. But a friend visiting from California happened to have an extra ticket. And isn’t that always the way we end up seeing things in our own backyard?”
For those of you who can’t make it to New York City soon, here’s a sneak preview, courtesy of Tim:
This pool is on the footprint of the World Trade Center’s South Tower. A twin pool is on the footprint of the North Tower. The Memorial Pools are the size of each tower’s footprint. Water cascades over the sides into a black square.
Thomas R. Clark grew up in the New Jersey neighborhood where we now live.
At left is the slurry wall that holds back the Hudson River from inundating the original World Trade Center site. It survived the attacks unbreached.
Nobody can quite remember the color of the sky that morning. Thus the 2,983 different tints.
Under the South Pool are the victims’ portraits and stories. Under the North Pool are memorabilia and exhibits, including parts of the planes and thousands of other artifacts related to the day.