May 31, 2014

Baby buggies take center stage

MALONE — Baby carriages during the late 1800s and early 1900s were a far cry from the modern strollers and joggers that parents now use to take their children out for a walk.

Over the years, the Franklin County Historical and Museum Society has been the repository for several very unique and decorative antique baby carriages.

With their satin linings and attached parasols, it’s not hard to imagine a proud mother parading her newborn in style down Malone’s shaded Elm Street.

“Babies, Bonnets and Buggies” is the theme of the Open House to be held at the House of History, 51 Milwaukee St., Malone, on Saturday, June 7; Sunday, June 8; and Saturday, June 14.

Childhood antiques will be on display throughout the museum. 

“It just seemed appropriate to follow our wedding-gown open house from last year with a baby-related open house this year,” said Co-Board President Cheryl Learned.

“It is a great opportunity for the community to see ornate and beautiful artifacts that people provided for their children in years gone by.”

The exhibit will also feature baby clothing and porcelain dolls that young girls played with, now owned by women in their elder years. Unpacking these treasures — on loan to the society especially for the Open House — brought back fond memories.

As volunteers set up the exhibits, the attics and storage areas in the Italiante-style museum were scoured in order to display Malone’s special relics and share the heritage left behind by local families.

“Often these beautiful carriages, dolls and photographs are tucked away in storage, in an effort to protect them,” said Accessioning Volunteer Jean Goddard.

“The society decided it was time to take them out of storage and share them with the public. For most of them, it’s been a long time since they have been enjoyed. Also, we really appreciate the ladies who have allowed us to display their treasures, too.”

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