Perusing our archive of Central Park Stereopticon pictures recently I came across this singular photo of a camel, seeming quite relaxed on a stroll through Central Park.  As part of the park’s menagerie (which later became the Central Park Zoo), camels visited Sheep Meadow periodically. This particular camel appears to be roaming the park quite freely. Camels were popular at the menagerie, and they got lots of attention in the press; newspapers updated New Yorkers on when new camels came to the park, when a baby camel was born, and when a beloved camel died as evidenced by this brief, but poignant, notice in the NY Times:

“VOLSTEAD, ZOO CAMEL, DIES
Grief of Mate and Offsprlng Acute – Museum Declines Carcass
Volstead, the 14-year-old Bactrian camel who had long figured as one of the chief attractions at the Cen­tral Park Zoo, died yesterday after four days’ illness. Volstead, who was born in the zoo here, was the last of the male camels of the Central Park herd. He is survived by his mate, Jeanette, and an 11-months-old offspring, Jeanette 2nd. The grief of the survivors was described by Head Keeper Robert Hurton as acute.
The Museum of Natural History having declined to accept Volstead’s carcass, the camel will be buried at Barren Island.”
Published: May 23, 1930 Copyright © The New York Times

I think my favorite part of the whole camel saga was the name “Volstead”. This was thanks to the efforts of the aforementioned Robert Hurton, known around the Menagerie as “Bob the Moniker King”. Besides his sensitivity to the bereavement of the Volstead clan his finest moment might have come in the services of “Tiny” the Hippo. While he may not have displayed exceptional talent in nicknaming this particular charge he did perform nobly in the matchmaking department. As reported by the NY Times Mr. Hurton noticed that Tiny seemed apparently lonely and actually had a suitable mate sent all the way from Hamburg, Germany.

 

They were also apparently employed as part of the ongoing landscaping efforts:

Working Camel

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And as a special ride attraction on Sheep Meadow.

Camel ride on Sheep Meadow

 

Walking Tour Overview

  • Duration: 2 hours
  • Book Risk Free: Free cancellation up to 24 hours in advance
  • Free reschedule or full refund in case of bad weather
  • Tickets: Both printed and mobile tickets accepted

The walking tour covers all most beautiful sights of the southern half of Central Park. You will walk through some of the 58 miles of trails the park has to offer passing a lake, rocky outcrops, bridges, arches, sculptures and more.
This tour takes you off the beaten path to sights both the bikes and pedicabs cannot reach - book here.

Bicycle Tour Overview

  • Duration: 2 hours
  • Book Risk Free: Free cancellation up to 24 hours in advance
  • Free reschedule or full refund in case of bad weather
  • Tickets: Both printed and mobile tickets accepted

The bicycle tour provides a complete journey through 843 acres of Central Park, guaranteeing that you will see the most out of any tour available. Your tour guide will provide background information, historical insight, and point out some of the most photogenic sites for you to capture photos!
This tour covers about six miles in a casual, smooth pace with lots of stops for walking and photos. It's the ultimate way to discover Central Park - book here.

Pedicab Tour Overview

  • Duration: 1 hour, 2 hours or 3 hours
  • Book Risk Free: Free cancellation up to 24 hours in advance
  • Free reschedule or full refund in case of bad weather
  • Tickets: Both printed and mobile tickets accepted

The most comfortable way to explore Central Park. No need to walk or peddle - just sit, lay back and enjoy beautiful views and insightful commentary.
This is a private tour for you and your party. A complete, relaxed, and personalized experience of Central Park. You can choose from 1 hour, 2 hours or 3 hours tour options.  Custom pick up/drop off spots are available too - book here.

Combination Tour Overview

  • Duration: 2 hours or 3 hours
  • Book Risk Free: Free cancellation up to 48 hours in advance
  • Free reschedule or full refund in case of bad weather
  • Tickets: Both printed and mobile tickets accepted

The Combined Pedicab & Bicycle Tour is ideal for parties when one part part prefers to ride their own bikes, and another part prefers the comfort of the pedicab – on this tour all the group will stay together and have stops for walking and group pictures - book here.


About Central Park

Find all the information you need to enjoy your visit to New York City's iconic Central Park.


Things To Do

From The Philharmonic on the Great Lawn to Shakespeare in the Park to SummerStage, Central Park offers an endless array of things to do, see, hear - and, with two full service restaurants and several cafes, taste.  You can visit The Shakespeare Garden, take in a performance at the Swedish Cottage Marionette Theater, take a ride on the Carousel - or just sit and people watch at Bethesda Terrace!


Contact Us

Contact Info

5th Ave. 
New York, NY, 10028

Follow On