New-York Historical Society to Welcome the Holiday Season with Elaborate Display of Model Trains and Toys from the Renowned Jerni Collection
Selections from the World’s Greatest Toy and Train Collection, Exhibited for the First Time in a Museum, on View November 23, 2012 - January 6, 2013
New York, NY, [October 9, 2012] — Magnificent model trains, train stations and sheds, bridges and tunnels, carousels and Ferris wheels—all populated with toy figurines in colorful nineteenth-century dress, will be on view this holiday season at the New-York Historical Society, in the first museum exhibition of selections from the renowned Jerni Collection. Holiday Express: Toys and Trains from the Jerni Collection featuring vintage European and American toys chosen from a collection that is widely acknowledged as the world best, will be installed from November 23, 2012 through January 6, 2013, welcoming holiday visitors to the 77th Street Judith and Howard Berkowitz Sculpture Court in the Rotunda of New-York Historical and the institution’s Luce Center for the Study of American Culture.
Assembled over a period of some fifty years by U.S. collectors Jerry and Nina Greene and numbering some 35,000 items, the Jerni Collection spans the years from approximately 1850 to 1940 and contains a comprehensive representation of the work of every major manufacturer, including the German firms of Märklin, Bing, Ernst Plank, Carette and Rock & Graner that set the standard for the Golden Age of European toy manufacturing.
“Many of the real buildings and bridges that you see represented here in scale model were destroyed in battle, but the toys survived both world wars,” Jerry Greene stated. “For me, these wonderful objects are a part of history. It’s now time to show them in public, so everyone can appreciate them. I hope they bring as much joy to others as they have brought to me.”
Louise Mirrer, President and CEO of New-York Historical, stated, “The holiday season has been an integral part of this institution from its very beginning—so much so that one of our members, Clement Clarke Moore, is credited with having written ‘A Visit from St. Nicholas.’ What better way to delight our visitors this holiday season than to bring them this rare and beautiful portion of social history and material culture, preserved by the collectors’ dedication?”
Among the unique, hand-crafted and hand-painted toys will be the only existing first model elevated station. Designed by Märklin, ca. 1895, it is known as the Rolls-Royce of toy train manufacturers and will be displayed in the Judith and Howard Berkowitz Sculpture Court, near the 77th Street entrance. In New-York Historical’s Luce Center, the installation will include Märklin’s largest and most elaborate train station, ca. 1904; Marklin’s only known extant post office, ca. 1895; a Märklin girder bridge designed by Gustave Eiffel, ca. 1905; Rock & Graner’s extraordinary hand-painted road over double-arched brick bridge, ca. 1902; and Ernst Plank’s exquisite Ferris wheel from the turn-of-the-century.
About the New-York Historical Society
The New-York Historical Society, one of America's pre-eminent cultural institutions, is dedicated to fostering research and presenting art and history exhibitions and public programs that reveal the dynamism of history and its influence on the world of today. Founded in 1804, New-York Historical has a mission to explore the richly layered history of New York City and State and the country, and to serve as a national forum for the discussion of issues surrounding the making and meaning of history.
New-York Historical is recognized for engaging the public with deeply researched and far-ranging exhibitions, such as Alexander Hamilton: The Man Who Made Modern America; Slavery in New York; Nature and the American Vision: The Hudson River School at the New-York Historical Society; Grant and Lee in War and Peace; Lincoln and New York; Nueva York; and WWII & NYC. Supporting these exhibitions and related education programs is one of the world’s greatest collections of historical artifacts, works of American art, and other materials documenting the history of the United States and New York.
Vice President of Communications
The New-York Historical Society