It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas at the Fairfield Museum & History Center! The Holiday Express Train Show is open, and this year’s display features something new: a meticulously decorated dollhouse.
Two area residents created the Victorian dollhouse in 1979, and designed it to resemble a doctor’s house in honor of their son, who was in medical school at the time.
The house was created by the late Evelyn and Frank Gerratana, whose photographs are currently featured in the Fairfield Museum’s exhibition Picturing the News: The Distinctive Vision of Harry Neigher and Frank Gerratana. The husband and wife presented the dollhouse to their son when he opened his first office as an orthopedic surgeon.
Different pieces of furniture and the décor within the dollhouse were created by a number of miniature makers with whom the Gerratanas came into contact through the Miniature Collectors Guild of Connecticut and the National Association of Miniatures Enthusiasts. It includes a dining room where the doctor’s wife is preparing tea, a doctor’s office showing the doctor consulting with a girl in a wheelchair, a parlor and bedrooms, including one with its own dollhouse.
Mr. Gerratana was a past Connecticut representative and member of the National Association of Miniature Enthusiasts. He was also past president of the Miniature Collectors Guild and was known for his handcrafted miniature medical instruments.
Mrs. Gerratana served eight years as regional director of the National Association of Miniature Enthusiasts and a former National Historian for 12 years. She was a past president of the Miniature Collectors Guild of Southern Connecticut, vice president of the Jenny Lind Doll Club and member of several other miniature and doll clubs. She had been an instructor of porcelain painting for more than 40 years and specialized in porcelain bisque miniature dolls and Victorian accessories.
The husband and wife team exhibited their handmade miniature houses and dolls throughout the country, did slide lectures and also taught workshops in the U.S., Canada and England.
To see the dollhouse, visit the Holiday Express Train Show, open until Jan. 3, 2016. Hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekends, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. weekdays. From Dec. 24-31 hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Fairfield Museum is closed Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.
The Fairfield Museum, 370 Beach Road in Fairfield, is a non-profit museum, library, cultural arts and educational organization founded in 1903 that provides families in Fairfield County with a wide array of exhibits and educational programs that teach regional history, celebrate a shared heritage, and prepare students and adults to be more active participants in their community. Admission is $5 for adults; $3 for students and seniors. Members of the Museum and children under 5 are admitted free of charge.
Information is available at 203-259-1598 or Fairfieldhistory.org.