Category Antiques

Metal detecting and material culture

When I was much younger, I interned for 4 months at the New Bedford Whaling Museum. It was about that time when I discovered “material culture” as a field of study. As a historian raised on a steady diet of old papers, I couldn’t make much sense out of material culture. It seemed to me […]

Fashion Course Design Book (1920s or 1930s)

A creative historian always has his/her eye out for curiosities. This design book was made by Virginia Rymer (who that is, I don’t know yet). I bought it at an antique store in West Virginia today for just $10. It seems to have been made for a college course, and includes pages of pages from […]

Some daguerreotypes

I picked up a few daguerreotypes in reasonable condition and at a decent price ($20-$25 each) at an antique store the other day. Both cases had broken hinge, but were otherwise complete. The old man has some coloring added to his cheeks – something I have seen before, especially with later tintypes – but the […]

A Photo for a Dollar

Shake out a book: A Library Exercise for a History Class

Here’s a fun activity for historians and students in history classes:  Go to your school or university library, open up old books and shake them out  (not literally shake them, you guys!). How many books might you need to shake out before you find a piece of paper?  Usually its about 20 or 30 books. […]

1950s Slide Projector

Today I stopped by one of my favorite antique stores, Alpha & Omega Antiques, near Staunton, VA.  I found a box of slides and a projector in near mint condition. With some help from my friend Mike Healy, the store’s owner, we got the projector working. After a few adjustments, we projected an image against […]

Capon Bridge Founders’ Day History Presentations

I served as a volunteer for the Capon Bridge Founder’s Day festival. Mostly I just handed out surveys for the West Virginia Humanities Council, but this required me to attend all of the history events, which I probably would have done anyway. Here are a collection of photos from the event.

Vintage Rollerskating Stickers

I inherited two books with over 600 total rollerskating rink stickers from the early and mid 1940s.  I’m trying to figure out how to sell the collection – either in part or as a single unit. Let me know if you are interested. The stickers were collected by one person, Jorma Urban, of Holland, Michigan.  […]