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  • Men's Patten Overshoe, 1830-1850

    Pattens, a type of overshoe, were used to protect both feet and shoes from mud and snow. Wooden-soled overshoes were used as early as the fourteenth-century but were restricted to the wealthy. By the early fifteenth-century, a form of composite leather sole made pattens more widely accessible. Because of their functional appearance, they were generally associated with the lower classes and country people, although they were more useful in town than in the country where the iron ring would have s…

  • Women's Slippers, 1830-1850

    These slippers- really shoes- may have been used for a wedding. They appear plain but remnants of thread on the throat indicate this pair was decorated. Heeled shoes with square toes were particularly popular in the 1830's and 1840's. These leather shoes are less delicate than those made from satin, but still offer little support or protection from the elements. Thus, these are indoor shoes used to look fashionable. If worn outside they would quickly become soiled; the foot hangs over the straig…

  • Earrings, about 1830-1850

  • Child's Dress, 1780-1830

    This dress, which belonged to the Hungerford family of rural New York State and could have been worn by a girl or boy, has features dating from a broad span of years. The bodice is constructed to reflect, in very simple form, a woman's bodice with a faux busk pocket or channel in the center front, which seems more late eighteenth than early nineteenth century. It appears to be a bit later than the collection's other woodblock-printed Mitchell family dress (object no. 35.894.1).

  • Boy's Suit, about 1820

    The military-looking Eton-style suit was common for young boys in the 19th Century and was used for school or special occasions. This rare example belonged to the Mitchell family of rural New York State (as did the very similar suit numbered 35.596.57). The jacket front is very typical of those worn around 1820. This is a variation of the skeleton suit in which the trouser buttons attached to a shirt or braces rather than the jacket.

  • Women's Boots, about 1845

    Fabric gaiters that matched an outfit, with ankle lacings and square toe, were extremely popular in the mid 19th century. Wedding gaiters were of white satin, everyday pairs were of sturdy fabrics such as this. This pair could have been made at home (see Every Lady her Own Shoemaker, 1856). This pair comes from the Mitchell Family of Port Washington, New York.

  • Boy's Suit, 1820-1830

    The Eton-style suit was common for young boys in the 19th Century and was used for school or special occasions. This rare and rather expensive example belonged to the Mitchell family of rural New York State (as did the very similar suit numbered 35.596.5).The jacket front is very typical of those worn around 1820. The suit is nicely made but not exquisitely so; it is all hand-sewn and of lovely silk fabric. This is a variation of the skeleton suit in which the buttons on the waistband attach to …

  • Men's Slippers, 1830-1860

    "Undies", or casual morning wear to be worn at home, could be quite decorative and fancy in the 19th century. Loose fitting sacques or morning dress for women could be quite elaborate, including elegant footwear. Men, too, enjoyed robes and slippers that could be quite elaborate. Berlin work patterns for slippers were exceedingly popular circa 1850. These slippers are both expensive and quite elaborate for a middle-class man around 1850. They appear little worn. Benjamin Wheeler was, according t…

  • Trousers, about 1780-1830

    Expensive heavyweight fabric work pants worn over trousers to protect fine clothing from abrasion during riding.The trousers are a very rare survival.

  • Women's Patten Overshoe, 1830-1850

    According to the donor, the patten overshoes were worn in the mid 19th century by her great-grandmother, Mrs. Pastrigs. Pattens, a type of overshoe, were used to protect both feet and shoes from mud and snow. Wooden-soled overshoes were used as early as the fourteenth-century but were restricted to the wealthy. By the early fifteenth-century, a form of composite leather sole made pattens more widely accessible. Because of their functional appearance, they were generally associated with the lower…

  • Capote Bonnet, 1820-1830

    A capote- literally, French for hood-began to be worn in 1790s.It is characterized by a stiffened fabric brim framing the face, a soft gathered or pouch-line crown, and ribbon ties extending from the crown.The American prairie sunbonnet is a descendant of the capote.

  • Trousers, about 1830-1870

    The pants were purportedly worn by an individual in a Shaker community.

  • Frock Coat, about 1830-1850

    Plain yet attractive frock coat, probably used for some special occassion in a rural community.

  • Boy's Jacket and Shorts, about 1935

    The shorts were found in the collection with the jacket and are presumed to be related. One wonders if the terriers were inspired by President Franklin Roosevelt's "Falla" - a dog that was beloved by Americans.