The newly reinterpreted and vastly expanded Stewart Toy Soldier Gallery at The Frazier History Museum is one of the premiere collections of toy soldiers in the United States, and one of the largest collection of historic toy soldiers on public display in the world. Made possible thanks to a generous donation of toy soldiers from Charles Stewart of Frankfort, Kentucky, whose love of toy soldiers began as a boy and continues today with a collection of nearly 13,000 world class figures representing approximately 114 historic toy soldier and figure manufacturers.
With over 16,000 toy soldiers in its collection and over 10,000 soon-to-be on display, The Stewart Toy Soldier Gallery brings the toy soldier experience out from behind the glass, and into the hands of children (both young and at heart) who simply want to play. The exhibit allows visitors to browse makers, styles and periods of treasured miniatures, while using their imaginations to experience a tiny world of play though hands-on interactives.
The Frazier's expanded toy soldier collection highlights local connections to history and Culture of Louisville the The Louisville Citizen's Guard unit, and The Kentucky Derby set, both displayed on the 1st floor.
Founded in 1859 in Göppingen, Germany, Gebrüder Märklin, or Märklin, as it is known today originally specialized in dollhouse accessories! The maker is currently renowned for its model railways and technical toys. During WWI, as Britian and Germany raced to build bigger and better ships, toy makers followed suit building complex and sophisticated wind up tin ship models that were raced around ponds by children around the world. The toy ship craze was so popular that when a groundskeeper drained the pond in London's Kensington Gardens in 1923, he discovered 150 sunken vessels at the bottom!