This small object may have been one of several travelling razor cases owned by George Washington over the course of his lifetime. It originally came equipped with all the tools necessary to maintain a neat appearance: two razors, a hone and strop to set them, a mirror, comb, lather brush, scissors, and possibly a toothpick. While Washington was typically clean-shaven, on at least one occasion illness required him to depart from his usual grooming regimen. In a 1786 letter to a friend, he explained, "I am tolerably well again, but obliged to make use of Scissars instead of a Razor, for part of my face, when shaving."


Rectangular case made of leather-covered paper board that opens to reveal a central, upright compartment; interior lined in green leather; a piece of leather sewn inside the front flap creates three triangular shaped pockets; a rectangular mirror is attached to the interior of the back flap; central compartment has slots for the hone, comb, and a wooden slide with a lather brush, as well as an additional rectangular slot and a small cylindrical slot; on the exterior of the front flap is a silver lock with a stepped, rectangular face ornamented with undulating line borders atop a club shaped plate with egg and dart borders; the back flap extends to cover the top of the central compartment and folds over to join the front flap; the clasp of the lock is missing.





Leather, silver, glass, paper board, paper


Overall: 8 1/4 in. x 1 1/4 in. x 3 1/4 in. (20.96 cm x 3.18 cm x 8.26 cm)
Other (open): 14 1/4 in. x 1 1/4 in. x 3 1/4 in. (36.2 cm x 3.18 cm x 8.26 cm)

Credit Line

Purchase, 1951

Object Number


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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