“Harry Potter: A History Of Magic” Now Open In New York City

Published on October 9, 2018

It’s been a couple of years since the wizarding world of Harry Potter really came to life. The release of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them was the first time in years that the big screen saw the works of JK Rowling since the Harry Potter series ended in 2011. Now, as the Fantastic Beasts series gains traction with the release of the second film, the Harry Potter momentum is picking back up again around the world. “Harry Potter: A History of Magic” is an exhibition that began at the British Library in London. Now, the “Harry Potter: A History of Magic” exhibit is bringing the wizarding world to New York at the New York Historical Society.

Dive Into The World Of Harry Potter

A documentary that was released in 2017, also titled “Harry Potter: A History of Magic,” took audiences through the British Libraries process of curating the vast array of props and artifacts for the exhibit. The exhibit takes attendees into the magical world with a collection of rare artifacts, books and information about both Harry Potter and the folklore that inspired it.
Harry Potter: A History of Magic” takes audiences through a complete history of the world of magic showing the world that inspired J.K. Rowling to create Harry Potter. It even includes some items from her personal collection, as well as rare manuscripts and elements of the original copies of the books.

“Harry Potter: A History of Magic” is split into different rooms throughout the exhibit. Each room is inspired by a different subject in the Hogwarts curriculum. Potions, history of magic, transfiguration, charms, herbology and care of magical creatures, for example. Each subject is broken down by room and offers different information. The information is about both the Harry Potter world and the folklore that inspired it. Potions, for example, was inspired by the IRL French chemist and alchemist Nicolas Flamel. The exhibit includes things like Flamel’s grave (straight from Paris) and other works.

The Real History Of Magic

Fans will remember Flamel from Harry Potter as the wizard that created the Sorcerer’s Stone. In the story the stone can turn things into gold or create immortal life. All of the things we all wish we could do but can’t (I would use it on my dog). In real life Flamel may not have been a sorcerer (I mean, there’s no real proof), but he did make a fortune. After his death rumors sparked that he discovered something called the Philosopher’s Stone.  This stone was rumored to have had the same abilities as the stone in Harry Potter. Folklore about Flamel says that he’s allegedly still alive and roaming the streets of Paris. There have been multiple reports of sightings throughout the last couple hundred years.

“Harry Potter: A History of Magic” is open to the public at the New York Historical Society. The exhibit is open now through January 27, 2019. The exhibit is selling out quickly, so grab your tickets in advance here. The Crimes of Grindelwald, which is the second of five Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them movies, hits theaters around the world in November.


Julia Sachs is a former Managing Editor at Grit Daily. She covers technology, social media and disinformation. She is based in Utah and before the pandemic she liked to travel.

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