Eloise at the New York Historical Society

Eloise at the New York Historical Society

Hilary Knight (b. 1926). Illustration for the Plaza Hotel children’s menu, 1957-8. Paper. Collection of Hilary Knight. Copyright © by Kay Thompson

I hope some of you  Tomatoes are old enough to remember the marvelous Kay Thompson, singer, actress (“Funny Face”) and cabaret star and her delightful creation, Eloise, the little girl who lived at the Plaza Hotel with her Nanny and pets and wrecked havoc wherever she went.  The New York Historical Society is having a wonderful exhibition on Eloise until October 9 which gives you plenty of time to see it.

Eloise at the New York Historical Society

Hilary Knight (b. 1926). Unused cover sketch, 1955. Eloise. New York: Simon & Schuster, 1955. Graphite, pen and ink, watercolor and gouache on paper. Collection of Hilary Knight. Copyright © by Kay Thompson

And you must see it.  I loved it, remembering Eloise from years ago when she first appeared in 1955.  There are drawings by Hilary Knight who drew Eloise and at 90 is still working.  He appeared and spoke and I was astonished by how young he looks.  I thought at  first he was in his early 70s.

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There are evocations of Eloise exploring the nooks and crannies of the storied Plaza Hotel and adventuring across the globe to Paris and Moscow.  There are recreations of Eloise’s bedroom at the Plaza and a little story-telling nook for children to sit and listen to stories about her at various times during the day.  I absolutely loved it.

June 30-October 9. Get the details.


Miriam Silverberg is a freelance journalist and publicist and owner of Miriam Silverberg Associates, a boutique publicity agency in Manhattan.  She may be reached at silverbergm@mindspring.com.

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