This Danville, Kentucky, attraction’s more than 200 fully furnished dollhouses and room boxes exhibit the tiniest, most exquisite details.
A bunch of tiny grapes the size of seed pearls rest on a miniscule charcuterie board. Nearby, a working brass corkscrew the length of a lima bean sits alongside an itsy-bitsy bottle of wine, and apples as small as baby peas fill a wee silver serving bowl. It’s all part of the Great American Dollhouse Museum experience in Danville, Kentucky, which portrays the social history of the United States in miniature.
The scenes portrayed through vignettes in more than 200 fully furnished dollhouses and room boxes — a mix of artisan, antique, contemporary and historical pieces — exhibit the tiniest, most exquisite details, right down to the miniscule, red-topped matchsticks spilling from a matchbox the size of a pinkie tip.
Travel through history told by dolls as tastes change, fashions transform and technology alters the landscape. Peek through the windows to see how people lived, worked, played and got into mischief, from the Native American and Colonial eras to the Civil War and the Old West periods, onward into the 20th century and beyond into the realm of fantasy.
Outside Mummert’s Castle — a sprawling 14th-century piece of Celtic architecture — an elaborate medieval quest unfolds through the Fraewood, a wildland full of tree people, unicorns, dragons and fantastical creatures. In the Dorothy Johnson Henry Dollhouse, the museum’s most recent acquisition, visitors can see work by internationally acclaimed artists from the United States and Europe. The house originally belonged to the daughter of restaurant and hotel magnate Howard Johnson.
Visit the gift shop on the way out to find everything needed to fill your own dollhouse, ranging from wallpapers to rugs to dishes. Travelers can even purchase a small-scale dollhouse to begin furnishing their own mini abode. 344 Swope Dr., Danville, Kentucky 40422, 859/236-1883, thedollhousemuseum.com