Neonatology on the Web

Wonderland, Eden Musee, and Luna Park, Seattle

Wonderland, Eden Musee, and Luna Park, Seattle

An incubator baby sideshow first appeared in Seattle at the Wonderland Exhibit in November, 1906. The proprietor was a certain “Professor” Harry Spaw, about whom little is known. Admission was 10 cents to view “chubby” babies in three incubators. Indigent babies were accepted for care at no charge.

Seattle Times announcement of Wonderland Incubator exhibit, November 18, 1906
Advertisement in the Seattle Star, November 3, 1906.

Wonderland only survived about a year, and incubator babies next appeared at a new amusement arcade called Eden Musee sometime in 1907. Eden Musee was similarly shortlived, and was out of business by the middle of 1908. By spring 1909, incubators were being displayed at Seattle’s Luna Park attraction, which seems to have been modeled on Coney Island’s Luna Park, in what was called a “Baby Electrobator Exhibit.”

In June of 1909, the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition opened, which had a incubator baby exhibit on the “Pay Streak” or Midway. The exhibit appears to have been highly successful, selling 28,000 tickets over the course of several months. More information about the Alaska-Yukon-Pacific Exposition can be found here.

Last Updated on 02/04/23