Buffalo Island museum is featuring an exhibit of miniature tea sets.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013
Tea set on display at BI Museum in Monette.

Little girls have been playing "tea party" since the 16th century when the little cups and saucers were made in Germany of pewter and copper. Gold and silver tea sets were made for the little princesses of Europe. It was in the 18th century that the first ceramic children's tea sets were made, but only the wealthy could afford them.

European factories began making the tea sets when porcelain became widespread in the 19th century. Sets of copper, tin, pewter and porcelain soon followed and at an affordable price.

In the early 1900s the plastic tea sets were first made. The plastic sets came in many colors and designs. When dollhouses became popular, the tea sets were made in a miniature scale. Although they are still made for the dollhouses, they have became more popular to a collector.

Some of the miniature tea sets at the museum are tiny porcelain cups and saucers, but others feature tiny cups and teapots shaped like roses, watermelons, clowns, bears, angels, Dalmatian dogs with a fire hydrant, honey bees with a honeycomb, chickens, Cinderella, Noah's Ark, flowers with leaves as saucers, and many other designs. These miniature tea sets are 35 to 50 years old.

The Buffalo Island Museum is always looking for special exhibits. If you have a collection that you would allow us to display at the museum, please let us know. Some of the exhibits in the past have featured Indian artifacts and Avon collectibles. We have a future exhibit planned featuring items from Japan, including a silk kimono.

You can get more information and enter our monthly Museum Artifact Contest on our Facebook page. The correct answer will win a prize. Admission to the museum is free. Our hours are 12:30-4 p.m. Friday and Saturday and this summer from 1-3 p.m. Sunday.

Buffalo Island Museum wants to preserve the past for future generations. Visit the museum and be amazed at the things our forefathers used on Buffalo Island many years ago.

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