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Dolls' house - May Foster's House

May Foster's House

  • Object:

    Dolls' house

  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1800 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:


  • Credit Line:

    Given by Mme Georges Patry

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Museum of Childhood, Homes Gallery, case 2

This house was donated to the museum by the great grand-daughter of the little girl for whom the house was originally made.This grand town house belonged to the daughters of John Foster, an ambitious and wealthy engineer who ran Liverpool docks.
‘MF’ over the door stands for May Foster, who shared the house with her sister Isabella. The dolls’ house stayed in the family for 120 years.

Physical description

The house has three storeys, each with two rooms, one either sided of a central staircase. The ground and first floors are separated on the exterior facade by applied pilasters and decoration. The whole of the front façade is divided into three bays. The central one has eight windows and a door reached by three steps with columns, a semicircular skylight and surmounting pediment. The flanking bays each have three windows. The other sides are plain. The roofline is surmounted by five urns and the central front bay is topped by a pediment with a circular window and carved decoration. The pitched roof has two chimneys. The top floor contains a bedroom and the first floor has two further bedrooms. The ground floor has a kitchen and one other room. The front façade is hinged and can be locked.

Place of Origin

England (made)


ca. 1800 (made)



Materials and Techniques



Height: 127 cm, Width: 114 cm, Depth: 54 cm

Object history note

Made for Mary Foster of Liverpool whose initials appear over the front door. Originally the house would have been fixed on a stand containing two drawers.

Descriptive line

Dolls' house known as May Foster's House made in England in about 1800




Children & Childhood; Dolls & Toys

Production Type



Museum of Childhood

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