This fun LEGO telephone is part of a large donation that we received in 2009. Starting with Indianapolis Public School children in the 1920's, the museum’s collection has been built through artifact donations. Over the years, the collection has grown to encompass more than 120,000 objects, thanks in large part to our generous donors.
In 2009, Curator Andrea Hughes and I traveled to Chicago to meet with a donor. This gentleman had an apartment filled with a wide assortment of toys, dolls, games, and fun pop culture items! He had a particular fondness for Pink Panther items as his godfather was Isadore “Friz” Freleng, a well-known animator and cartoonist whose studio produced the opening animation for the 1963 film The Pink Panther. Mr. Freleng also worked with artist Hawley Pratt to introduce or re-design a number of famous Warner Brothers characters, including Yosemite Sam in 1945.
Andrea chose 146 objects from this treasure trove to add to our permanent collection. Highlights include:
- 33 stuffed toys—including Warner Brothers favorites like Yosemite Sam, Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck
- 30 Pink Panther items—board games, puzzles, costumes, books and stuffed figures
- 11 boardgames—everything from The Flintstones to Pac-Man and Sweet Valley High
- 10 books and 21 Little Golden books
- 9 sets of Barbie trading cards
- 8 puzzles—including my personal favorite, a “Where’s The Beef?” jigsaw puzzle
- 7 telephones—in addition to the LEGO phone, we have a Coke bottle and can, robot, chocolate milk carton, Knight Rider and a high-heel shoe
- 6 lunchboxes—Knight Rider, Annie and Punky Brewster to name a few
- 5 Halloween costumes—the Pink Panther costume was included in our 100 Toys exhibit!
- 4 sets of play food packages—perfect for that play kitchen!
- 2 sets of Star Wars Micromachines
We've already used many items from this collection in various exhibits and we're sure to use them in a variety of ways in years to come. A big thank you to all of our artifact donors for making our collection wonderful!