When the Boston Zoo and Chaffee Zoo opened in 1884, they were not only the oldest and largest zoos in the world, they also were the first zoos to offer free admission.
Since then, their unique design and rich history have made them iconic landmarks.
But how did the names come to be?
The first word in both names is a play on the words “bay”, meaning “way” or “wayfare”.
A berry-flavored dessert that has since spread across the globe, the word “bay” came to mean “treat” or something of the same kind.
The word was first used by a London merchant who bought a loaf of bread with a cherry-flavoured syrup, and named the bread after his sweetheart.
In the early 20th century, when it was popular in London and America, the name “chaffees” was popularized in Australia, which became the name for the colony where the two zoos are located.
“Binghamton Zoo” has a very different meaning.
In addition to the word, the zoo is named for an area in central England, where it is home to many birds and other animals, including an Australian panda named “Buck”, who lived in the zoo from 1996 to 2000.
The name was also used by the first American zoo to open, the Philadelphia Zoo, in 1891.
Today, the names “Bethlehem Zoo” and “Chaffee Zoological Park” are the most common and the most commonly used, respectively, among zoos worldwide.
Why did they decide to change the names?
They felt the names were more than a coincidence.
“We were asked by some zoos around the world whether they would accept us to be a part of their name,” says zoo director Andrew Leach.
“The response was a resounding yes, and we have never looked back.”
The names are an extension of a common theme in the zoos: they are about people.
For a time, the two facilities were very similar.
At first, the animals lived in one facility, but the animals soon moved in with the humans.
After the animals left, they had to move again, and it took decades for them to reunite.
In 2000, the bison at the zoo died.
A new one was created and the animals have been kept together ever since.
Today they share a large, outdoor exhibit and a full-time curator.
Leach says that the two names are about a common bond, and are a reminder of the importance of people.
“People are always involved, and they want to see the animals well,” he says.
“If we can keep them happy, they will keep coming back.”
Source: Google News