This museum, housed in the genuine hospital environment of Lastenlinna, or the Children’s Castle, gives a voice to the smallest of us. Among the items on display are a 19th century pacifier, Arvo Ylppö’s horrible but educational wax head dolls and an endearing swing for premature babies used to strengthen the newborn’s lungs.
The story of the Children’s Castle began in 1917, when Baroness Sophie Mannerheim founded a shelter for single mothers in Kallio, Helsinki. The following decade saw the opening of Finland’s first maternity and child health clinic as well as the dawn of childminder training.
The transport box for premature babies, the beautiful baptism dress donated by the Mannerheim family and the more than a century old music box that delighted children who had to spend Christmas in the hospital, remind us of the treatment of illnesses. Visitors may also slip through Arvo Ylppö’s unusually low door opening to enter the beloved paediatrician’s office.
The nostalgic photographs, guide signs and nursing equipment all tell the tale of efforts to secure a better childhood.
Address Lastenlinnantie 2, 00250 Helsinki
Phone 044 080 3558
Opening hours By Appointment
Entrance fee Free entry