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Grant number: PG-52200-14

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PG-52200-14

Wesleyan College (Macon, GA 31210-4462)
Lisa Sloben (Project Director: 05/06/2013 to present)

Wesleyan College Treasures: Assessing 175 Years of Period Attire

Hiring a consultant to undertake a general preservation assessment of a textile collection documenting the history of women's dress in the South from the 1830s to the present. The dresses and accessories -- jewelry, hats, handbags, parasols, and gloves--in the Wesleyan College Museum of Art's collection provide insight into the history of education, self-expression, and changing fashions of generations of graduates of this pioneering women's institution. Highlights include an early 19th-century dress made of home-grown cotton and indigo-dyed fabric that was worn by a family of South Georgia sisters, a World War I Red Cross nurse's uniform, flapper dresses of the 1920s, and a 1950s pink tulle piano recital dress. Used extensively by students and researchers, the collection was recently featured in a retrospective exhibit for the school's 175th anniversary.

Wesleyan College, the oldest college in the world chartered to grant degrees to women, owns a collection of historic dresses that presents a panoramic view of period attire from the 1830s to the present. Reflecting the influence of Southern culture and heritage, each individual costume represents a story that is special to the history of women's education. While many of the individual dresses stand out for their beauty, the value of the collection lies in its strength as a whole--one that has great aesthetic and educational significance to students, scholars and visitors. Hence, we will engage a textile consultant to conduct an on-site general preservation assessment of policies, practices and conditions affecting the care, storage and exhibition of these costumes and then recommend a long-term plan for the care and sustainability of our textile collection. Her findings will be incorporated into our strategic plan for preserving this fine collection.

Project fields:
Arts, General; Arts, Other

Program:
Preservation Assistance Grants

Division:
Preservation and Access

Total amounts:
$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2014 – 6/30/2015