Thanks to Houses of Wax reader Purple Peanut for these recent pictures from Musée Conti's Basin Street tableau. As you can see, the scene looks similar to the way it did in the vintage image. The only difference is that in the background we can see the Razzy Dazzy Spasm Band. These figures used to belong to the Jelly Roll Morton scene, but are now here in the Storyville set.
The prostitute is pick pocketing the sailor, which was not clearly seen in my first Basin Street post.
A closer view of the prostitutes fighting.
And a close up of the action.
The taller dark hair woman seems to be losing the fight.
The red head appears more angry. Notice the tape keeping her hand connected to her arm.
New Orleans 1910, the main street of the red light district. Lower Basin Street is lined with taverns, saloons and prostitutes. This typical scene shows the licentiousness of Basin Street, with its brothels, and violence.
A man and a woman embracing near a window.
This close up shows two inhabitants settling a disagreement the way differences of opinions were usually settled in this neighborhood- with physical violence!
Note: these two figures bear a striking resemblance to two figures from the Paris Spectacular Wax Museum. Perhaps they came from the same mold, or are the same figures.
Here we see a wax figure of Juliette Gordon Low, the founder of the Girl Scouts of the USA. This figure, which belonged to the National Historical Wax Museum, shows Low in her uniform. Low developed breast cancer in 1923, and passed from the disease in 1927.
Here we see the wax figure of Queen Victoria at the Royal London Wax Museum in British Columbia, Canada. She is known as the longest reigning monarch of the British Kingdom, and the longest female monarch in history.
This image of the Walter's International Wax Museum at the 1964/65 New York World's Fair shows an artists rendering of the exterior of the building. Walter's Wax Museum was basically the same wax museum as the Paris Spectacular Wax Museum from the 1962 Seattle World's Fair. After the 1965 season, the museum received a new home down the street from Disneyland and was renamed the Wide World in Wax. However, that venture lasted just a short time before closing.
This photograph from Potter's Wax Museum shows a wax figure of William Caxton, the first English printer. His printing press made possible many of the printed works of the Elizabethan era. Caxton continued printing his whole life, even hours before his death.
Perhaps the greatest Rock n' Roll group of all time, the Beatles are seen here in a vintage Madame Tussaud's tableau. This is a representation of the early beatles, and many museums have created figures of the group from their various stages with Sgt. Pepper being the most surreal.
George sits above the rest of the band.
John stands beside the piano listening.
Ringo holds his drum sticks while Paul plays the piano. Just being able to tell the figures apart (not so easy with other Beatles figures) shows how talented Madame Tussaud's is in creating realistic wax figures.
You might not recognize him with his shirt on, but this figure from the Hollywood Wax Museum is movie star Matthew McConaughey. This is the Hollywood gathering section of the museum, perhaps an awards show, or a movie premiere, and Mr. Maconahay stands ready to get his picture taken.
Fantasy is an often overlooked subject for wax museums, and the genre has slowly been removed from most museums. However, here we see Alice in Wonderland represented at the Louis/Josephine Tussaud's London Wax Museum in St. Petersburg Florida.
The evil Queen of Hearts.
The King of Hearts along with the back of Alice's head. It's unfortunate that there's not more scenes like this around anymore.
This tableau from the Plymouth National Wax Museum shows the Pilgrims on their way to the new world. Before they celebrated their first thanksgiving, they had to withstand a grueling and deadly trip to America. Many people died, and their arrival only brought them new challenges.
One of my personal favorite tableaux from Movieland Wax Museum is this magnificent display of Gene Kelly from Singin' in the Rain. With actual water falling from the ceiling, the scene is far above most wax museum scenes. The famous song plays as people view the figure.
A shot with flash shows more detail, but has less atmosphere.
A close up of Mr. Kelly.
One of the ever present clapboard signs detailing information on the movie. Notice the sign says Singing not Singin'.
The wax figure of Mr. Kelly was not sold at the Movieland auction, but the set sold for $200.