March 27, 2012

Living History - Historical Timekeepers

My home town has four museums, History Center, Dinosaur Discovery, Public Museum, and the Civil War Museum, small they may be, but they provide many hours of education and enlightenment to all of its visitors.

This past weekend the Civil War Museum, hosted its second annual Civil War Expo with seminars, classes, and exhibits. I was in the area and decided to pop in and check it out, here are a few of my favorite exhibits.

Spinning wheel demonstration using fur from a llama.

These sweet ladies had to educate me about the 
items sticking out from the containers on the table. 
They are called spills.

A spill is a long cone shaped shaving of wood that was
 used to transfer fire from one fire source, such as a 
fireplace or stove, to another, perhaps a lantern or candle,
 especially in the days when matches were scarce. 
Modern uses for spills include kindling for lighting a
campfire or packing material for shipping fragile items.

The spoon bonnet has a high brim and narrow 
sides and, does look similar to the bowl of a spoon.

This fan was used by fancy ladies at parties or dances.
The fan had a looking glass or small mirror on one end. When 
the lady was fanning herself the looking glass would reflect 
the fire light and attract attention from the gentleman.

1868 elliptical hoop skirt. The elliptical hoop has 
the fullness moving to the back of the skirt.

The front of the dress lies flat

while the back is much fuller.

Here are a few more photos;
a baby rattle, child's shoes, book

a man's coin holder that is worn over his belt

and a purse and hair comb

I didn't attend any seminars or classes, but I did enjoy the exhibits. Maybe next year I will attend the Civil War fashion show.


  1. So very interesting!! I sometimes wonder how the ladies functioned with all the full skirts!
    Enjoy the Day!!

  2. The hoop looked rather small - they were petite people. Loved the lavender dress and enjoyed the whole tour.

  3. Don't you find that stuff so fascinating! And yet when I see the pictures of the dresses at that time, I am thankful for Levi Straus!!.