Sunday, October 29, 2006

Southwestern Historical Wax Museum- Chamber of Horrors

Keeping with our Halloween theme, the Southwestern Historical Wax Museum displays a brutal scene of four men being hanged. I have no idea if the chickens are wax or live, or for what reason they are there. Many Chamber of Horrors just have random scenes of violence, and this may be one of them. Seeing a person hanged is scary enough, and at least the set fits in with the Southwestern theme.

The Southwestern Historical Wax Museum, located in Grand Prairie Texas burned down in 1988. Most noted for their Bonnie and Clyde death car, the museum reopened as the Palace of Wax shortly thereafter. The museum is still in operation and houses a Ripley's Believe it or Not Museum as well.

Visit the Louis Tussaud's Palace of Wax Museum here.


Thursday, October 26, 2006

Hollywood Wax Museum- Freddy and Jason

As we head towards Halloween, the chamber of horrors awaits us with chilling views of some of Hollywood's scariest villains. Two of the most terrifying of these bad guys are Jason Voorhees and Freddy Krueger. Thank goodness for the cages that separate guests from these monsters. Things could have gotten messy.

Look out, Freddy is gonna get you. Sometimes these figures look so close to the original that its scary. Freddy and Jason are two perfect examples. The Hollywood Wax Museum has a pretty tame Chamber of Horrors that focuses on movie monsters for the most part. I found it odd that they had two different Jason displays. This one with Freddy, and another one for the movie Jason Goes to Hell.

Visit the official A Nightmare on Elm Street website here.

Visit the official Friday the 13th website here.


Saturday, October 21, 2006

Hollywood Wax Museum- Spoony Singh


The wax museum world has lost one of its modern pioneers. Spoony Singh, the founder and owner of the Hollywood Wax Museums died Wednesday October 18th. He was 83. The Los Angeles has a really interesting article which highlights some of Singh's accomplishments in the world of wax and beyond. If you are in the Southern California or Branson Missouri areas, then I recommend stopping by and viewing the wonderful worlds the Singh family has created.

Visit the Hollywood Wax Museum website here.


Friday, October 20, 2006

Winchester Wax Museum- Oliver Winchester

Entrepreneur Oliver Winchester discusses
a new invention with his employee-
B. Tyler Henry whose patents in 1860
made the company a success.

What would a wax museum about the Winchester company be without a figure of the man himself. Oliver Fisher Winchester (1810-1880) took the Volcanic Repeating Arms Company and turned it into an empire. He is seen here with Benjamin Tyler Henry, who invented the Henry Rifle. The Wax Museum on the Mystery House property seems to have been pretty modest from what I can tell. (but not every place can be Madame Tussaud's)

Visit the Winchester Mystery House website here.


Monday, October 16, 2006

Madame Tussaud's- And When Did You Last see Your Father?

And When Did You Last see Your Father? (1878)

Based on the painting by William Fredrick Yeames, this tableau recreates the famous problem picture "And When Did You Last see Your Father?" The poor boy must choose between honesty and saving his Royalist father whom the soldier wants to capture. The boy's family stands behind, crying at the possibility that he may reveal his father's location. The detail on this accurate reproduction makes this scene more than just an above average set.

Notice just how close the tableau is to the original painting. Problem paintings were very popular in the nineteenth Century because of the ambiguous and complicated nature of the stories portrayed.

Visit the Madame Tussaud's London website here.


Wednesday, October 11, 2006

News- Tony Parker figure at Musée Grévin

On Saturday October 7th the Musée Grévin in Paris France unveiled a new wax figure of San Antonio spurs guard Tony Parker. Parker helped introduce the figure which looks strikingly accurate in all detail. The sculptors did a terrific job recreating his likeness.

This shot shows Parker and all the people around who were at the unveiling. He is the first sports star to be enshrined at the museum.

Visit the Musée Grévin website here.


Saturday, October 07, 2006

Movieland- Animal Crackers

A classic comedy team, the Marx Brothers, is immortalized in the Movieland Wax Museum. Groucho, Chico, and Harpo represent the 1930 movie Animal Crackers, and they seem to be enjoying themselves. This small set is just packed with life. Although it is unusual that Chico would be directly in the front of the set and not Groucho or Harpo, it works. How funny it is that the brothers magically all had different accents! (Not counting Harpo of course)

A typical clapboard and wax facts sign.

Some sets had these extra signs. With a team as popular and influential as the Marx Brothers, a simple "Wax Facts" sign was not enough. The set sold at auction for $300. The figures were not auctioned off so they most likely ended up at the World Wax Museum in Korea (unconfirmed).

View the Filmographies for Groucho, Chico, and Harpo.


Thank you for visiting Houses of Wax

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Tussaud's London Wax Museum- Death of Abraham Lincoln


Here is an interesting view from the old Louis Tussaud's London Wax Museum. I have seen wax figures of Lincoln being shot, and some of him just standing alone, but this scene of him lying in a coma in the Peterson house is pretty unusual. Next to him are Mary Todd Lincoln and either Charles Leale or Joseph K. Barnes, perhaps somebody else). Showing Lincoln dying in a bed is not as shocking as a view of the assassination itself, but it does create a very sad and somber mood.

The Louis Tussaud's London Wax Museum was located on Gulf Boulevard in St. Petersburg Florida. The museum operated from 1963 until 1989 under various names. I have no information on what happened to the collection of figures (Maybe they became part of other museums, or were sold, possibly destroyed). There are still wax museums under the Louis Tussaud's name, most notably in Texas and Niagara Falls.


Sunday, October 01, 2006

American Historical Wax Museum- Sergeant York


Here is an image of Alvin C. York, the famous World War I hero. Born in Pall Mall Tennessee, The defunct American Historical Wax Museum of Gatlinburg dedicated a scene to this local hero. As a Corporal, he led a group of soldiers on this successful attack of German Machine gunners. His heroics helped earn him the rank of Sergeant. There were obviously more than three German soldiers being raided, and he did not defeat them single handed (contrary to popular belief).

A close up of Alvin C. York. The figure is a fairly accurate representation of the man.

View more information on Alvin C. York here.

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