The Samurai

In 2005, Mary Hulton Phillips, Founder of the museum purchased a collection of stunning antique Japanese Dolls. The collection was known to have been displayed in various museum exhibits.

Many of these dolls required conservation. Rhonda Wozniak, Objects Conservator from Pittsburgh, Pa., was engaged in the project. After months of work under the skilled hands of Ms. Wozniak, the dolls emerged in 2008 to take their places, once again, as the focus of this exhibit celebrating the annual “Children’s Day” (Tango- No-Sekku) Festival.

The Samurai were revered guardians of the people and next to the imperial family in the Japanese social strata. Samurai Dolls were first created during the Edo Period (1600-1868). They represent the heroic figures of folk tales and Japanese literature. Other decorations for the Children’s Day celebration include Iris leaves, symbolic of Samurai swords, and Koi-Noboru (carp-like streamers).