Madame Tussaud’s

William Palmer waxwork, courtesy of Madame Tussaud's
William Palmer waxwork, courtesy of Madame Tussaud’s

It is thought that Dr. William Palmer is the only inhabitant of Rugeley to have had a wax image in Madame Tussaud’s Waxworks in London.

For over a hundred years, from 1857 up until 1979 a waxwork figure of Palmer stood in their famous Chamber of Horrors.

I am grateful to Fiona Pirrie from Madame Tussaud’s in London for gaining permission for us to use the picture on our web site. She also kindly provided some information about the story of Madame Tussaud’s the founder of the wax exhibition in London.

  • 1761 Madame Tussaud is born Marie Grosholtz in Strasbourg.
  • 1777 Marie models the famous author and philosopher, Francois Voltaire
  • 1780. Marie becomes art tutor to King Louis XVI’s sister and goes to live at the Royal Court in Versailles
  • 1789 Marie returns to Paris.
  • 1793 Marie is imprisoned in the Laforce Prison with her mother where she shares a cell with the future Empress Josephine. On her release she is forced to prove her allegiance to the Revolution by making death masks of executed nobles, including her former employers, the King and Queen.
  • 1794 The French Revolution ends and Marie inherits Philippe Curtius’ wax exhibition.
  • 1795 Marie marries Francois Tussaud.
  • 1802 Madame Tussaud takes her exhibition on tour in the British Isles.
  • 1835 Madame Tussaud establishes a base in London at “The Bazaar, Baker Street”.
  • 1846 Punch Magazine coins the name ‘Chamber of Horrors’ for Madame Tussaud’s “Separate Room” where gruesome relics of the French Revolution are displayed.
  • 1850 Madame Tussaud dies.
  • 1884 Marie’s grandsons move the exhibition to its current site at Marylebone Road.
  • 1925 The exhibition is devastated by fire.
  • 1928 Restoration is completed with the addition of a cinema and restaurant.
  • 1940 Madame Tussaud’s is struck by a bomb destroying 352 head moulds and the cinema.
  • 1958 Madame Tussaud’s open the Commonwealth’s first Planetarium.
  • 1990-3 The exhibition undergoes extensive refurbishment, with the inclusion of new themed areas.
  • 1993 The Spirit of London, a spectacular animatronic ride, arrives at Madame Tussaud’s.
  • 1995 The London Panetarium is re-opened after a £4.5 million re-development including the installation of the world leading Digistar projector.
    1996 A bigger, better and more chilling than ever Chamber of Horrors is opened. New star show “Planetary Quest” opened at Tussaud’s Planetarium.
  • 1997 The Planetarium dome is transformed into the biggest red nose in the universe for the Comic Relief charity.
  • 1999 Madame Tussaud’s opens a special display in conjunction with Time Magazine to portray some of the publication’s nominated top 100 people of the 20th Century.
  • 2000 A special display of Madame Tussaud’s wedding dresses of Diana, Princess of Wales, Sarah Duchess of York and Sophie, Countess of Wessex opens. A spectacular new star show “Wonders of the Universe” opens at The London Planetarium.

For further details contact Fiona Pirrie 020 7487 0313 or Diane Moon 0207487 0264
Or visit their web site www.madame.tussauds.com .

In 2001 the Tussaud’s Group owns and operates the leading visitor attractions Madame Tussaud’s London, Amsterdam, Las Vegas, New York, Rock Circus, Touring exhibition and London Planetarium, British Airways London Eye, Alton towers, Thorpe park, Chessington World of Adventures and Warwick Castle.