21 Muppets Find a Much-Deserved Home at the Smithsonian

Thanks to a donation from the Henson Foundation, on Tuesday, Miss Piggy, Kermit the Frog, and 19 other Muppets and well-loved characters gained their rightful place in history, entering into the collection of the Smithsonian Museum. As Kermit would say—hi-ho!

There was a special ceremony to mark the Muppet's induction yesterday, which would have been creator Jim Henson's 77th birthday. Many of characters that will be permanently enshrined in the Washington, D.C. museum are the earliest of Henson's puppets, so they look a little different from the ones you know and love today. Kermit wasn't a frog yet, for example. And the earliest version of the Cookie Monster was chowing down on IBM computers—he hadn't graduated to cookies yet. The early iteration of Grover is green. His blue coat came later.

21 Muppets Find a Much-Deserved Home at the Smithsonian

The Muppets and friends will be on display starting in February 2014 as a part of the American Stories exhibit. This is the (almost) full list of what the museum got:

Muppets:

  • Miss Piggy
  • Kermit the Frog
  • Fozzie Bear
  • Rowlf
  • Swedish Chef
  • J.P. Grosse
  • Scooter
  • Prairie Dawn
  • The Wilkins Coffee Muppet

Sesame Street

  • Elmo
  • Grover
  • Count Von Count
  • Oscar the Grouch
  • Cookie Monster
  • Bert
  • Ernie

Fraggles

  • Boober Fraggle
  • Traveling Matt

One of the beautiful things about this donation is it builds on the Smithsonian's existing collection of Muppets. The museum already owns puppets from Sam and Friends, a show Henson created before the Muppets. And many of these newly-acquired characters had been stored away in boxes for years and years. So it's good and right that they now live in a museum, where they'll get the attention they deserve. [Reuters, Smithsonian Mag]

21 Muppets Find a Much-Deserved Home at the Smithsonian

Images via AP