Tag Archives: antiques

Historians as Detectives

One of the best examples of the difficulty involved in dating and verifying a genuine antique is represented by the Chinese export porcelain in the Intent section of the Treasures on Trial exhibition. These objects were not sold in a … Continue reading

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A Closer Look: Winterthur’s Dollond Telescope

Taking a closer look has a double-meaning when a telescope is the object of our gaze. This one, with a mahogany wood barrel and brass fittings for glass lenses, is a special treasure in the Winterthur collection. It seems enormous … Continue reading

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The Remarkable Life and Career of a Free African-American Cabinetmaker

This mid-19th-century mahogany veneer dressing bureau, one of Winterthur’s newest furniture acquisitions, is a visually striking object with an even more striking history. Although the dresser conforms to popular urban furniture designs of its era (with its distinctive carved bracket … Continue reading

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Let There Be (Just Enough) Light!

The eternal dilemma for all museums revolves around light: we need light to see our collections, but light causes damage that eventually leads to objects’ destruction. Mitigating light exposure can help extend the lifespan of objects on display and is … Continue reading

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Why So Sensitive?

If you read the Winterthur Blog about a year ago, you may have stumbled across the post A Brittle Beauty and discovered that the treatment of Winterthur’s Chinese export lacquer has been part of an ongoing IMLS grant that began … Continue reading

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My Favorite Things

Take a peek inside the favorite things of those who work at Winterthur. Linda Eaton, John L. & Marjorie P. McGraw Director of Collections & Senior Curator of Textiles, and Tom Savage, Director of Museum Affairs, each share one of … Continue reading

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True Colors: Light Damage and Historic Needlework

This January, Winterthur acquired at auction a canvaswork picture associated with a group of needlework made in the Boston, Massachusetts, area. This embroidery, circa 1750, was created by Mary Perrin of Roxbury, Massachusetts. In many ways, the needlework is in … Continue reading

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The Versatile Horn: Nature’s Plastic

In an earlier blog post, A Lovely Bunch of Coconuts, we introduced objects created from coconut shells. Yet of all the organic materials in the Winterthur collection, perhaps the most versatile is the horn. Hooved mammals produce this layered growth … Continue reading

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Exotic Woods and International Trade

The objects in the upcoming Made in the Americas exhibition tell about global trade and how it inspired artistic traditions around the world (see our previous blog post, Globalism and Culturally Inspired Craftsmanship). Furniture crafted from exotic tropical hardwoods is … Continue reading

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A Priestly Treasure Trove of Ceramics

Around the turn of the 20th century, the Reverend Edward McClure, a Roman Catholic priest in Brockton, Massachusetts, commissioned photos of his house.  Lovingly bound in red morocco, the album cover proudly proclaims “Home of Father McClure” in gilt lettering.  … Continue reading

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