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Hagley makes history at the National Museum of China

The exhibition of patent models is the first U.S. show in the museum's history.

One of the patent models now on display in China. (Photo courtesy of Hagley Museum)

The National Museum of China is the largest and most-visited museum in the world, with 200,000 square meters of floor area (that’s over 2 million square feet) devoted to exhibitions exploring the history and culture of China.

It had never had a U.S. history exhibit, but that changes Wednesday, when 60 of Hagley’s 19th-century patent models go on display in an exhibition titled “The Power of Innovation: Patent Models from the United States of America.”

“The exhibition is designed to inspire visitors by exploring the innovative thinking behind some of American’s greatest inventions and highlighting the importance of a robust intellectual property system,” said David Cole, executive director of Hagley, which is home to the largest private collection of patent models in the world.

Hagley’s models have been in China since March. After the exhibition at the National Museum of China, which is projected to be seen by 2 million visitors, they will be moved to the Yangtze River Civilization Museum in Wuhan, where they will remain on display through September.

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