Published: December 5, 2000
NEW YORK CITY – The Museum of the City of New York collects toys that tell the stories of growing up in New York. Focusing on the imagination and the imaginary, the exhibit “” includes games, toys, and playthings that have shaped the experiences of the city’s children. Dating from the Nineteenth Century to the present, the objects run the gamut from the fantastical to the familiar.
In the Nineteenth Century, the City led the Burgeoning business of toy importing and distributing, making a wide variety of toys available to children across the country for the first time. By the start of the Twentieth Century, the City boasted some of the foremost toy companies in the world, placing New York at the center of toy manufacturing.
In addition to mass-produced toys, the exhibit features handmade playthings reflecting the diversity of experiences and unbounded talents of individuals for whom the City serves as a springboard for inspiration. Sitckball bats, skateboards, marbles and board games evoke the body and mind freed to wander into new and challenging territory. The larger-than-life sized White Rabbit, who once stood in the original Central Park Children’s Zoo, joins such story-book characters as Max and the Wild Things and Eloise, the six-year-old girl who lives at the Plaza, to conjure a metropolis where anything is possible.
A highlight is the return of the Stettheimer Doll House. Created in the 1920s by Carrie Walter Stettheimer, hostess to New York City’s avant-garde artists and writers, the house is one of the museum’s most famous and best loved treasures. It has delighted visitors since it was given in 1945 by Carrie’ s sister, Miss Ettie Stettheimer, a few years after Carrie Stettheimer’s death.
Constructed over a period of almost twenty years during Carrie Stettheimer’s adult life, the doll house is a unique three-dimensional work of art with an art gallery featuring works by some of the most acclaimed artists of the 1920s.
The museum, 1220 Fifth Avenue, is open Wednesday through Saturday, 10 am to 5 pm, and Sunday noon to 5 pm.
5 Church Hill Road / Newtown, CT 06470
Mon - Fri / 8:00 am - 5:01 pm