A “Wanted” portrait of the tooth-snatching mouse known throughout Latin America as Ratoncito Perez; an early 19th century tooth key used for pulling teeth, a puppet from the early 1930s; tiny porcelain teeth and a drawer of coins, shells, and other substances used as money — the makings of a curious collection.

To the folks at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History, these artifacts provide actual evidence that the Tooth Fairy used the Smithsonian as her secret drop location, at least as part of an imaginative video inspired by Katherine Ott,  Curator in the Division of Medicine and Science there.

“The material past holds countless surprises and mysteries to be solved—the next generation of history lovers, historians, and museum goers may well become hooked on the past through the museum’s mockumentary on the Tooth Fairy mystery,” Ott writes in her museum blog. 

With the help of student film-maker Angeli Gabriel from American University and Ott’s museum colleagues who agreed to dead-pan for the camera, “The Tooth Fairy File” became a reality.

Ott invites those with  youngsters in their life (pediatric dentists, this means you) to inspire them, using the video, to start their journey through time with a museum visit.

A smattering of dental artifacts featured at the museum is also available for view at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/nationalmuseumofamericanhistory/sets/72157632634972298/