Whatsits and Whatnots: Bowers Permanent Collection Oddballs

Detail of 2003.50.37 Gift of William R. Moran   Weird and Just Downright Weird As part of an ongoing project to classify the Bowers Museum’s collections, our Collections team has reached many an oddball object that does not easily fall into standard categories. Many more have outlandish or wonderfully rare names. Today’s post is a celebration ...
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Every Federal Employee Deserves Favor: Gifts of State in the Bowers’ Collections

Gold Bracelet, c. 1970 Jordanian Gold and elephant hair; 1 1/8 x 2 1/2 in. 77.4.8 Gift of United States Government The Gift that Keeps on Taking In the United States there is a price that can be put on changing someone’s mind. It exists in the form of an upper limit for the value of gifts that can be accepted from foreign dignitaries and, given tha...
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J.L. Hubbell: Silver Tongue, Golden Heart and Wool Rugs

Rug, c. 1910 Navajo; probably Ganado, Arizona Dyed wool; 65 x 105 in. 2019.5.1 Gift of Dennis J. Aigner White Hat There is good cause for the romanticizing of the American West: it is a breathtaking part of this nation. Mesas rise from the red earth like monolithic and silent guardians; the skies are distilled blue, endless and not cloudy all day. ...
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Forged in Fire Safety: The First Santa Ana Fire Department

Hook and Ladder Volunteer Firemen of Santa Ana, May 1, 1888 Photo by B. F. Conaway; Santa Ana, California Photographic print; 8.5 x 5 ¼ in. 2821 Gift of John Luxembourger Sunny Santa Ana California William H. Spurgeon and his wife spent a few years in the early 1860s living in Los Angeles until she passed away. Heartbroken, he moved back to the Eas...
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Well Trained: The Bowers Museum’s Model Train Collection

Märklin SK800 Steam Locomotive, 1946 Gebr. Märklin & Cie. GmbH; Göppingen, Germany Metal; 7 in. 80.78.21 Gift of Mr. Richard D. Lusch All Aboard The winter holidays bring with them an array of traditions and customs, most of which date back hundreds and hundreds of years. The tradition featured in this post is a newer one, roughly 130 years of age,...
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Oh, Say Can You Scrimshaw

Scrimshaw of George Washington, early 19th Century Unknown artist (American); North America Sperm whale ivory and ink; 5 1/4 x 2 1/2 x 1 1/2 in. 2011.25.56 Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Burton W. Fink New England, Old American Carvings Independence Day is the annual celebration of all things American. For most, revelries might include fireworks, barbeque, t...
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