The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 United States Thursday, June 21, 2018

National Museum of American History Showcases Two New Exhibits
Celluloid, the world’s first commercially successful plastic, was invented by John Wesley Hyatt in 1869.

WASHINGTON, DC.- The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History is featuring more than a century of toy history in a history highlights case, “Toys from the Attic.” Showcasing toys from 1825 to 1939, the case explores the changing experience of an American middle-class child. With the improving economy of the 19th century, children were sent to school rather than to work, and adults began to understand the distinct importance of childhood and its specific needs. These changes allowed American children time to play and encouraged greater demand for manufactured toys. Toy companies began to create evermore sophisticated toys intended to entertain, educate and prepare children for adulthood.

The case highlights more than 30 physically and mentally stimulating toys, including an 1890s’ swimming doll, an early 20th-century tricycle and a 1908 children’s carpet sweeper. It examines manufacturers’ methods of toy innovation, such as moveable parts, as well as the history of toy marketing, including its shift to targeting children directly and the selling of toys in “wish lists,” catalogs and department stores. “Toys from the Attic” demonstrates how greater public demand led to the more affordable mass-production of toys, such as alphabet blocks and children’s sewing machines, which would supplement education and prepare children for adult life.

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History’s newest historical highlight case features “Celluloid: The First Plastic.” The case explores the many uses of celluloid and its contribution to the plastics industry in America and features a variety of objects, ranging from picture frames and postcards made in the 1890s to advertising calendars and toy animals from the 1940s. The objects came from Norman and Dadie Perlov, who donated 2,000 celluloid objects from their private collection to the museum in 2006.

Celluloid, the world’s first commercially successful plastic, was invented by John Wesley Hyatt in 1869. Hyatt originally invented celluloid to be used as a substitute for ivory in the manufacturing of billiard balls. Celluloid soon became common in the manufacturing of other items, such as cutlery sets, baby rattles, jewelry and table-tennis balls because of its inexpensive but highly durable qualities. Celluloid was the foundation that led to the development of the plastics manufacturing industry in America; however, its highly inflammable qualities made it hazardous to produce and the manufacture of most celluloid products ceased by the 1940s. Today celluloid is only used in the production of table-tennis balls, for which a successful substitute material has not been discovered.

National Museum of American History | Washington | "Celluloid: The First Plastic" |

Today's News

June 20, 2010

Renovated Albertinum in Dresden Unites Past and Present in New Exhibition Halls

Kick Back in Pantone Inspired Style: Pantone Hotel Opens in Brussels

Art Institute of Chicago Intertwines Sound & Vision in Exhibition

Hayward Gallery Reopens with International Survey of 36 Artists

Paris Photo 2010 will Put the Spotlight on Central Europe

Trela Media Published The Autobiography and Sex Life of Andy Warhol

Solo Exhibition with Photographs by Maura Sullivan at Kahmann Gallery

Nelson-Atkins Announces Exhibition of Vibrant Watercolors by Alfred Jacob Miller

Giuseppe Moccia Wins PHotoEspaña OjodePez Human Values Award

Delaware Art Museum Presents Fifty Works for the First State

Emiliano Zapata "Rides" to the Chapultepec Castle in New Exhibition

Exhibition Brings Together the Great Names of Belgian Contemporary Art

Alexey Titarenko: Black and White Saint-Petersburg at Pobeda Gallery

Art and Design to Raise Funds for Literacy in London

Scandinavian Home Interiors as Seen through the Eyes of Artists at Nationalmuseum

Odette England and Elaine Duigenan Exhibit at Klompching Gallery

Eight Photographers for Harbourfront Centre's Major Commission for Outdoor Exhibition

Times Square Alliance Public Art Program Invites Artists Propose Projects

National Museum of American History Showcases Two New Exhibits

IMLS Launches National Campaign to Promote 21st Century Skills and Community Engagement

Most Popular Last Seven Days

1.- Porsche Super Speedster offered for first time in 50 years at RM Sotheby's Porsche 70th Anniversary Auction

2.- Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens opens 'Storytelling: French Art from the Horvitz Collection'

3.- Gauguin: Voyage to Tahiti stars Vincent Cassel as the famed French artist

4.- Stunning colored diamonds expected to dazzle at Heritage Auctions' Summer Fine Jewelry Auction

5.- US designer Kate Spade found dead at 55

6.- Vincent Van Gogh painting sells for over 7 million euros: Artcurial auction house

7.- Sir Stanley Spencer painting discovered hidden under a bed during a drugs raid

8.- Oxford's Bodleian Libraries unveil UK's first major Tolkien exhibition in decades

9.- Major exhibition at the Guggenheim explores decades of work by Alberto Giacometti

10.- World's largest freshwater pearl goes for 320,000 euros

Related Stories

National Museum of American History receives Peace Corps objects

Display Showcases Two Key Smithsonian Figures

New National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia Celebrates Jewish Life

National Museum of American History Accepts Red Hat Society Donation

Nation's Illustration Museum Celebrates 10th Anniversary

Maya Funerary Tapestry Restored and Ready for Exhibition

Maya Funerary Tapestry Restored and Ready for Exhibition

Suicide-Prevention Phone Acquired by National Museum of American History

Apollo Theater Exhibit in Washington D.C. Shows Jackson's Hat

Smithsonian Offers Activities and Experiments during NanoDays 2010

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher:Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful