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Sunday, May 22, 2011

Elgin History Museum

With my chair almost done I decided to give myself a break from painting since I am almost done, and go check out the Elgin History Museum for which I am painting my chair. I met with Mrs. Elizabeth Marston once at the Museum and she was kind enough not only to give me a tour of the museum and reveal a bit of history, but to show me a sneak peek at some exceptional posters not yet on display. 

A painting of what the Museum looked like before lightning struck

I learned a bit about the town which was pretty impressive. A lot of commerce and business took place in the area that I wasn't really aware of, taking into consideration that companies in the midwest could easily ship both east and west of the country. I also learned that the building was once a school, the current academy now resides in a building next to the museum.

While there is some stuff about the Native Americans in the area and a few other things about Elgin I wanted to focus on the watch company that used to exist in Elgin. There are a lot of artifacts about the time pieces that I thought was really nice, including mock up areas of what work benches looked like as well as a rather nice collection of all sorts of watches. 

The case of wind up keys caught my eye right away. I haven't seen too many wind up keys for watches and had no idea that they had to be wound up daily back then. 

And one of the many beautiful watches on display along with it's key. I found it to be highly useful to see the watches in particular and noticed that I painted the face on the wrong side of the watch my pin-up is holding in her hand. Something I will fix today. 


I also found out that while the watch company made the watches they didn't make the cases. Instead they would work along with jewelers who would then create the case for the watches, much like they made cases for make up and other compacts. And.....

Mortar rounds as well.....who would have thought?

And finally on my way out the door I noticed these little brooches made from watch parts....I thought they were charmingly steampunk and had to share it. Anyways, I have yet to finish my chair, and fix the watch my gal is holding! TTYL!

1 comment:

George said...

Great comments on the museum
You really get it. I wish I could get everyone to read this, they would want to come to the museum
George Rowe
Elgin area historical society