National Park Service Education and Public Program Center

The Corson
e Corson Building redevelopment plan calls for the creation of a number of interpretive and educational spaces in the facility including a 60 seat theater, a large multi-purpose education space, a seminar room, an archival room, and exhibition galleries. The plan includes the construction of a
building link which will connect the park visitor center to the Corson Building. The facility will host the visiting public and provide the space for curriculum and non-curriculum based educational and interpretive programs.

The Corson Building, which is located next to the park Visitor Center and across from the New Bedford Whaling Museum, consists of two three-story brick structures built in 1875 and 1884. For many years the Corson Building housed Moby-Dick Marine Specialties on its first floor, a popular shopping stop for visitors to the historic district. In 1997, a devastating fire ripped through the building, destroying its roof and top two floors. The Waterfront Historic Area League (WHALE), a non-profit preservation organization, came to the building’s rescue after the fire, hiring a structural engineer who convinced the City Building Commissioner that the building could be saved. WHALE acquired the building and secured the funds for its stabilization.

exerpt from NPS website: