The Filson Historical Society Digital Projects

Browse Items (115 total)

  • 2021.17.1_001a.jpg

    A small doll from an unknown time period, most likely during the early twentieth century. The doll has two sides: one girl with dark skin and black hair poking from her red hood, and a girl with light skin behind her white dress. The two girls are tethered at the hip, and when one side of the doll is flipped, the other side is revealed. It is unknown who exactly made this specific doll, who would have played with it, or when it would have been made.
  • IMG_6152.JPEG

    Mixed media model of a Tudor Revival home decorated for Christmas. The model was displayed in the Olde England on the Ohio exhibit at the Filson Historical Society in 2022-2023.
  • https://filsonhistoricalimages.files.wordpress.com/2022/12/1947_2_26.jpg

    Samplers were a staple in the education of girls, designed to teach needlework skills needed for household duties. Samples could be symbolic of the girl's culture, religion, social class, or personal accomplishments. Sampler making was seen as the ground work for civic, social, and familial responsibility. This was made by Abigail Prather Churchill the daughter of Abigail Pope Oldham Churchill (1789-1854), around age 11-13 at Nazareth Academy (which is near Bardstown, KY).
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    White silk mourning ribbon memorializing the death of Abraham Lincoln. "We mourn the nation's loss / Abraham Lincoln, April 15, 1865." Abraham Lincoln manuscript collection.
  • https://filsonhistoricalimages.files.wordpress.com/2022/12/1949_1.jpg

    This shawl is said to have belonged to Ann Rogers Clark Gwathmey (1755-1822). See also 1943.5.1 (miniature portrait). Paisley Shawls were a luxury item worn by affluent women. Paisley, as a style, didn't get its name until the 1830s-40s, named after the Scottish town that began to reproduce designs copied from textiles that were originally imported from India. The pin and cone design motifs had their origins from Indo-Iranian people in Persia. Luxurious textiles from India were in high demand among the upper class and often can be seen in portraits of affluent women. By the mid 18th century, England's East India Company was importing shawls to London. In the early 1800s, Scottish mills began producing their own version of the highly sought after shawls, which made them more accessible to the rising middle class.
  • 1936_1_1_1 copy.jpg

    Quilt belonging to Elizabeth Tyler Sturgeon. The quilt has strips of hand-woven cloth believed to have been made locally in Jefferson County, Kentucky, alternating with a commercial indigo print that was imported into the United States. The quilt, the oldest quilt in the Filson's collection, is more than 100 inches long on each side and was completely hand-stitched. Eliza married Thomas Sturgeon in 1816, who died seven years into their marriage in 1822. Eliza then took on the responsibility of managing their farm in addition to rearing her three young sons. Eliza enslaved seven people who provided crucial labor for the success of the farm and household. After her husband died, an unidentified enslaved woman helped Eliza manage the farm. In 1833, Eliza died from cholera leaving her three sons, all under the age of eighteen, to live with her brother.
  • https://filsonhistoricalimages.files.wordpress.com/2022/12/1978_4_72.jpg

    Basting spoons were used to baste (pour juices or melted fat over meat during cooking in order to keep it moist), as well as for stirring and serving. Basting spoons were used often because of the large amount of meat that was consumed on the frontier. Early Kentucky pioneers had a deep reliance on meat (especially wild game like turkeys or buffalos). They continued to eat wild game as a primary source of food until the pioneers learned to farm in their new environment. As Euro-merican settlers learned how to develop stable food sources through farming and domesticated livestock, they began to hunt buffalo for sport, nearly driving the population into extinction.
  • https://filsonhistorical.org/wp-content/uploads/1991_40_3-1.jpg

    Black crepe beaded bonnet, most likely worn in mourning. Possibly worn by Mary Brigham Robinson after the death of her husband Stuart Robinson in 1881.
  • https://filsonhistoricalimages.files.wordpress.com/2022/12/1936_1_7.jpg

    Handwoven, linen bedcover belonging to Elizabeth Tyler Sturgeon. Elizabeth married Thomas Sturgeon in 1816, who died only seven years into their marriage. Elizabeth then took on the responsibility of managing their farm while also raising her three young sons. Elizabeth enslaved seven people who provided crucial labor that contributed to the success of the farm and household. After her husband died, an unidentified enslaved woman helped Elizabeth manage the farm. In 1833, Eliza died from cholera, leaving her three sons, all under the age of eighteen, to live with her brother.
  • https://filsonhistoricalimages.files.wordpress.com/2022/12/1936_1_8.jpg

    Cotton bedspread belonging to Elizabeth Tyler Sturgeon. Elizabeth married Thomas Sturgeon in 1816, who died only seven years into their marriage. Elizabeth then took on the responsibility of managing their farm while also raising her three young sons. Elizabeth enslaved seven people who provided crucial labor that contributed to the success of the farm and household. After her husband died, an unidentified enslaved woman helped Elizabeth manage the farm. In 1833, Eliza died from cholera, leaving her three sons, all under the age of eighteen, to live with her brother.
  • https://filsonhistoricalimages.files.wordpress.com/2022/12/1987_x_4.jpg

    Empire dresses emerged in the early 19th century and rapidly became fashionable across Europe (particularly England).
  • https://filsonhistoricalimages.files.wordpress.com/2022/12/1992_13_1b.jpg

    This cotton dress is a great example of the changes (simplified, 'natural' dresses) occurring in women's fashion in the late 18th century to early 19th century. 'Naturalness' in this context refers to the use of lightweight , easily washable materials (like muslin, cotton, linen, poplin, and batiste) for dresses.
  • https://filsonhistorical.org/wp-content/uploads/1979_15_1_2.jpeg

    Mourning Bracelet made of twisted gold wire, copper pearl, and hair of Alexander Scott Bullitt (1761-1816). Less than 2" in diameter. Inscribed "ASB". Bracelets in memory of Alexander Scott Bullitt and his wife Pricilla Christian Bullitt, who settled 1200 acres known as Oxmoor, in Jefferson County, Kentucky.
  • https://filsonhistorical.org/wp-content/uploads/1979_15_2_1.jpeg

    Mourning Bracelet made of twisted gold wire, copper pearl, and hair of Priscillia Christian Bullitt (1770-1806). Less than 2" in diameter. Inscribed "PCB". Bracelets in memory of Alexander Scott Bullitt and his wife Pricilla Christian Bullitt, who settled 1200 acres known as Oxmoor, in Jefferson County, Kentucky.
  • https://filsonhistoricalimages.files.wordpress.com/2022/12/1932_14.jpg

    A mold that could make three candles at a time. Most candles at the time were made with tallow (animal fat) because other options like beeswax were expensive. Using bayberries, despite providing wax with a pleasant smell, was hard work and took too many berries to produce an adequate amount of candles. Once more lighting options were more readily available (lanterns, betty lamps, etc.) candles would be considered too expensive for daily use and were brought out for only special occasions.
  • https://filsonhistorical.org/wp-content/uploads/1980_10_5_2.jpeg

    Large jet cross with floral relief and linked chain. Worn by Elizabeth H. Bates Durrett (1831-1889), who lost one daughter, Florence Montgomery Durrett (1863-1869) at age six and a second daughter, Lily Bates Durrett (1859-1881) at the age of 21. Elizabeth also made a mourning quilt using material from her daughters' clothing. See also miniature of Lily.
  • https://filsonhistoricalimages.files.wordpress.com/2022/12/2022_14_1.jpg

    Cherokee artist Mary Thompson crafted this red, Lizella clay water jar using traditional coiling techniques and a hand-carved paddle stamp process. The Filson Historical Society purchased this jar from Qualla Arts and Crafts Mutual, an artist co-op whose members are enrolled citizens of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. This piece illustrates the cultural resilience of the Cherokee people despite their forced displacement once pioneers began to settle on their lands. Though the Eastern Band of Cherokee now reside in North Carolina, Thompson occasionally travels back to her ancestral homelands in Kentucky to gather natural materials for her artwork. This piece took 1st place in the 2018 Cherokee Indian Fair held annually by the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians.
  • https://filsonhistoricalimages.files.wordpress.com/2022/12/1937_1_2.jpg

    Raised embroidery whitework (also known as candle wicking) coverlet with a tufted basket and grape design. The family narrative states the coverlet was homespun from cotton grown on the farm of James Nicholls and Margaret Randolph Nicholls in Muhlenberg County, Kentucky. Whitework textiles were most prevalent in Kentucky between 1800 and the 1830s, and typically made by teenage girls. Elizabeth Randolph Nicholls Godman was aged fifteen when she made this coverlet. Likely the fiber for this coverlet was cultivated on the family farm. Elizabeth may have spun the fiber or taken it to a spinner (free or enslaved person), and then turned it over to a professional weaver in her community. Elizabeth would have then hand stitched the elaborate embroidered design.
  • https://filsonhistoricalimages.files.wordpress.com/2022/12/1987_27.jpg

    This darning sampler is a great example of the various embroidery techniques that young girls were expected to learn and be proficient in. Samplers were a staple in the education of girls. The samplers were designed to teach needlework skills needed for household duties and could be a symbol of the girl's culture, religion, social class, and personal accomplishments. Sampler making was seen as the ground work for civic, social, and familial responsibility.
  • https://filsonhistorical.org/wp-content/uploads/FIC1059-1.jpg

    Black silk dress, most likely worn during a phase of deep mourning.
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