by Amanda Bertholf // Spring 2011
A rare collection of fine-scale miniatures, toys and dollhouses is nestled within a stately mansion on UMKC’s campus. Items on display at the museum are from the private collections of Mary Harris Francis, who loved antique dollhouses, and Barbara Marshall, who appreciated the intricacies of fine-scale miniatures. Both women had collected so many items over the years that their homes were bursting at the seams. Family members joked that the two could start a museum with all the items they owned—so they did. Francis and Marshall formed a not-for-profit foundation in 1979 and the museum opened in 1982. Here’s a look at some of the highlights from the museum’s collection.