Monday, April 5, 2010

Tales of the Lost & Found

And now, for some belated April foolishness... Recently RI Monthly contacted us to find out about our most unusual lost and found items for a feature in their April issue. (We made the top of their list!)

So I asked staff, “What interesting, weird (or wet?!?) things have you seen?” Here’s what they had to say.

From former Experience Coordinators with particularly vivid (and shared) memories of some of our stranger sightings in the Lost & Found collection:

The strangest things I ever found: a (clean) baby diaper filled with sliced apples, a floor-length fur-trimmed coat, and many, many single shoes.  These were often larger then toddler size, meaning some 6-year old walked out of the Museum wearing only one shoe.

I mean, we had a lot of kids turn up there. The mainstay was sippy cups and princess-related accessories, but I do recall finding a single shoe and, on another occasion, a tiny pair of underwear. Oh, and Cheerios.

My favorite was definitely the giant fur coat!

I can only remember the gory stuff...used nappies, full lunches with mold and a green curly wig?

A white, floor length fur coat!  It was quite formal.  How do you forget your fur coat?  And why do you wear it to the Children's Museum?
–Laura H.

A necklace with a baby tooth as the pendant.
Lots of earmuffs. Lots. I felt like I was drowning in earmuffs.
–Laura N.

And some tales of unusual things seen in exhibits by our current staff and AmeriCorps members:

I found the pelvic bone from Bone Zone on a child's head as a crown. I don't know if that counts!

One day walking through Coming to Rhode Island I noticed that the Colonial gallery looked rather empty. Where was the furniture?  Across the time tunnel, the mill house was also devoid of furniture.  I checked out the ship and there it was - the Colonial settle, stool and butterchurn, the mill workers' chairs, bench and washtubs - all piled up in the hold of the packet ship! 

I've seen ALL of the Coming to Rhode Island food spilling from the ship's pot. And as I began to put it away, a band of kids formed to help me reorganize. I think they liked feeling like they were behind the scenes and responsible for the Museum.

One time a man was here with his very young daughter (just over a year old).  During their visit, she lost a little pink shoe and as they left they asked us to be on the lookout for it.  About a week later, I was cleaning under the ship and spotted the shoe in the crate with the chicken!
– Carole Ann

A couple of weeks ago, I found a clam from Coming to Rhode Island floating down the tubes of the toddler tank in Water Ways.  I found it funny, but also very fitting

Check out some other surprising discoveries, made when we dismantled our exhibits during building renovations.


Anonymous said...

My kids love your water ways room. Any chance of an upgrade? It's gotten very dingy.

Janice O'Donnell, Executive Director said...

I'm glad your kids love Water Ways - it's a perennial favorite of all ages. We agree it's looking a bit dingy - as the plastic tubes and pipes have aged, they've yellowed. But be assured it's not dirty dingy. All the tubs and tubes and loose parts - as well as the water itself - are well cleaned on a daily and weekly routine basis and the whole area recently got a major scrub down. And we've got some exciting plans for new Water Ways elements - stay tuned!

CK said...

I was wondering the same thing! I am so excited and happy Waterways will be getting an upgrade-we look forward to it!