moving like a herd of turtles

As a friend I knew back in Appalachia used to say.

I’ve spent most of the last couple of weeks working on the 10th anniversary exhibit for the Job Carr Cabin Museum, and I’m almost there.

I actually spent most of the time hunting down stuff to actually put in the exhibit, which will cover from 1997, when two local businesswomen came up with the idea to build the replica of the cabin, to December 2, 2000, the day the cabin was dedicated.  I have two whole artifacts — a miniature of the cabin, and some of the nails left over from the construction (they’re not standard-brand nails, but the kind that look hand-made at your local blacksmith shop).  The architect who designed the replica gave me some blueprints I’m going to attach to the fabric on the back of the display.  Everything else is photographs.  Some came from a local business, some from one of the two businesswomen who were the driving force behind the reconstruction, and some from the museum itself. 

The one thing that amazed me (and not in a good way) was how there were no pictures of the groundbreaking.  Or of the park pre-cabin (a very nice woman at the parks department searched for me, but even they didn’t have anything). 

But I did eventually come up with enough items to make the exhibit actually look like something.

These are the cases, after I installed the backdrop fabric:

The board in the middle will acquire letters that say “The Birthplace of Tacoma” and be hung centered above the cases.
The inside of the case with fabric, which is not solid black, but a Civil War reproduction fabric.  It shows up much better in real life.
The lefthand case with photos but no headers, text, or captions.  That will all come on Friday (I’ve got it all printed out — it just needs to be mounted on foam core).  The top two photos are of the original cabin and of the land before it became a park. The two gentlemen in the photo next to the model cabin are Job Carr, Tacoma’s first mayor (portrayed by actor Ray Egan), and Tacoma’s mayor at the time of the replica’s construction, Brian Ebersole.  The diagrams at the bottom are artist’s renderings of the cabin and its landscape.
The righthand case.  The light-colored square thing with the three dark lines is my nail mount.  The photo at the bottom is a panorama of the dedication.  The other two photos were taken during construction.  I will post more close-ups when the display is finished.
So I’m making progress!  It’s certainly been a learning experience so far.
Oh, and if you happen to be near Tacoma, Washington, on Sunday, July 18th, please come to the cabin for our Living History Day.  There will be walking tours of Old Town Tacoma and lots of demonstrations (including me, quilting in public again this year [g], as well as a blacksmith and a weaver and someone making butter, among others).  And you’ll get to see my very first exhibit’s debut!
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Categories: museum work, museums, research, volunteering | 2 Comments

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2 thoughts on “moving like a herd of turtles

  1. Good progress!I like your picture, too!

  2. Thank you!

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