Like many places in New York and around the country, Ellis Island was closed during the coronavirus pandemic. At the end of August, the Immigration Museum re-opened at 25% capacity. But one of the most extraordinary places on Ellis Island remains closed: the 100-year-old abandoned hospital complex. Save Ellis Island, the non-profit in charge of the restoration of the buildings asked Untapped New York to produce two virtual tours inside the abandoned hospital to make you experience the space as if you were there.
Today, we are very excited to share with you these gorgeously shot virtual tours, led by our Chief Experience Officer Justin Rivers. You’ll feel just like you’re standing there, amidst the crumbling ruins of a place that once determined the fate of hopeful immigrants to the United States. Proceeds from these virtual tours go directly to Save Ellis Island to support their long-standing effort to restore and rehabilitate the historic buildings. Watch the trailers below and if you’re intrigued, click Rent to get access to the full video.
In the first video above, you will discover the laundry building, contagious disease wards, autopsy rooms, staff house and so much more as you walk in the footsteps of the immigrants who were there a hundred years ago. While exploring the buildings virtually, you will also see several life-size photographs of immigrants pasted on the walls of the abandoned buildings. You can also take a second virtual tour dedicated to these pieces of art which are part of artist JR’s exhibition “Unframed – Ellis Island”.
The 29-building South Side hospital complex is hidden in plain sight, just to the left of disembarking passengers headed towards the Great Hall. Looking at its desolate, skeletal frame now, it’s difficult to imagine its backstory as one of the largest public health undertakings in American history. Join us in these virtual videos to uncover its many, buried secrets!