Mechanical Musical Marvels Play On in Museum

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Clown Illusionist

Clown Illusionist, made by Jean or Henry Phalibois, Paris, c. 1890-1900. The Murtogh D. Guinness Collection/Morris Museum hide caption

toggle caption The Murtogh D. Guinness Collection/Morris Museum

The Morris Museum is home to one of the world's largest collections of mechanical musical instruments and automatons. The items were formerly housed in two New York City townhouses owned by the late Murtogh Guinness of the prominent Irish brewing family.

In the latest installment of the Hidden Treasures Radio Project, Harriet Baskas explains how nearly 700 mechanical marvels, which date from the early 16th century to the late 20th century, came to perform at the Morristown, N.J., museum.

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