In the late eighteenth-century, silk-lined, red leather cases such as this one were commonly used to display and preserve fine jewelry. This case was specifically crafted to contain a fashionable pair of high-arched shoe buckles. The buckles are believed to have been worn to a ball celebrating George Washington's inauguration as the first president of the United States in 1789.

Description

Hinged oblong, leather covered wood case lined in paper covered with white silk taffeta; two part case has a flat lower compartment and arched top compartment; a semicircular pasteboard divider rises from the center of the lower compartment to divide it into two equal sections; interior of top compartment and the proper left side of the lower compartment are lined in paper and white silk taffeta; balls of old tissue paper have been placed in each side of the lower compartment along with two small paper tags with Z-twist strings, each inscribed in ink, "C. D. A. 59656 290628" on one side and "Misses Work." on the other side; paper card with ink blots, "#" sign, and the inscription in ink, "Worn at/ Geo Washington's/ Inauguration Ball" placed inside the upper compartment; two small copper alloy hooks are nailed to the front of the lower compartment, one on each end; portions of the proper right hook as well as the corresponding fastening loops on the upper compartment are missing.

Date

1780 -1790


Geography


Material/Technique

Wood, leather, silk, paper, pasteboard, copper alloy


Dimensions

Overall (open): 2 1/4 in. x 6 3/8 in. x 6 5/8 in. (5.72 cm x 16.21 cm x 16.84 cm)
Other (closed): 1 5/8 in. x 6 3/8 in. x 3 1/2 in. (4.14 cm x 16.21 cm x 8.89 cm)
Other (pasteboard divider): 1 5/16 in. (3.33 cm)


Credit Line

Gift of Mr. and Mrs. H. Michael Tyson of Houston, Texas, 2000


Object Number

M-4085/C


Colors (Beta)


Mount Vernon's object research is ongoing and information about this object is subject to change. For information on image use and reproductions, click here.
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