Listen up, avid antique fan collectors: Your Mecca beckons.
Prominent high-end ceiling manufacturer Fanimation celebrated the move of the Antique Fan Collectors Assn.’s (AFCA) museum to its Zionsville, IN, facility with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on July 23. The museum is the only dedicated antique ceiling and desk fan museum open to the public in the world, according to the AFCA.
Aside from the company’s original designs, Fanimation has carved out a niche for itself by reintroducing antique fans with modern safety and control features.
The opening of the museum is the culmination of a longtime hobby for founder Tom Frampton. Some years ago, Frampton, an avid fan collector, joined the Antique Fan Collectors Assn. (AFCA). The AFCA membership has operated a museum since 1997 displaying fans on loan by the membership; this museum was hosted by Vornado Fan Co. in Wichita, KS. When the need to relocate became apparent last year, Fanimation offered to house the museum at its Zionsville facility.
One year later, and the antique fan museum is now open. It houses more than 400 antique ceiling and desk fans with over 140 manufacturers represented, including some of the earliest battery operated fans, water powered fans, steam powered fans, belt and pulley driven fans, alcohol powered fans, wind-up fans, electric handheld fans, ceiling fans, wall fans, desk fans, pedestal fans, rail car fans and fans that don’t even look like fans.
The oldest electric desk fan in the museum dates back to the early 1890s, and the oldest non-electric fans date back to the early 1880s.
The museum hours are from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday.