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Collections Blog

  • Object: Huqin

    Oct 15, 2018

    I-0581h Huqin Chinese 20th century Materials: Wood, coconut shell, horse hair The Chinese violin on display in the Music Room area of the Institute of Texan Cultures is a huqin or “Hu-Chin” which is a general term given to any [...]

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  • Object: Apothecary bottle

    Oct 04, 2018

    I-0369b Apothecary bottle M. J. Breitenbach Co. American New York 1892-1986 Materials: Glass, metal, paper Before there were pharmacies, people would go to their neighborhood chemist and into their neighborhood apothecary. Inside this shop you could find liniments, ointments and [...]

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  • Object: Cigar Box

    Oct 04, 2018

    I-0295i Cigar Box American San Antonio, TX 1909-1982 Materials: Wood, paper, ink This cigar box in the Institute of Texan Cultures collections was for a private blend of cigars, made especially for the exclusive Travis Club in San Antonio. They [...]

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  • Object: Abacus

    Oct 04, 2018

    I-0477a Abacus Japanese Japan 20th century Materials: Wood, metal, paint Before the invention of the computer or calculator, merchants used counting boards or an abacus to keep track of inventory and their finances. The abacus replaced other primitive counting devices [...]

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  • Object: Rail pass

    Oct 04, 2018

    I-0494e Rail Pass American San Antonio, TX 1886 Materials: Paper & ink The San Antonio and Aransas Pass railway or “SAAP” was a railway system that connected San Antonio to Aransas Bay . It was chartered in August 28, 1884 [...]

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  • Object: Button hook

    Oct 04, 2018

    I-0471d Button hook 1900-1950 Materials: Metal, wood Image by Birgit Brånvall, via Wikimedia Commons. An essential household item in the  Victorian era, used on everything from garments to shoes. A button hook was an ideal tool to have on hand [...]

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  • Object: Typewriter

    Oct 04, 2018

    I-0443a Typewriter American New York, NY ca. 1893 Materials: Metal, plastic, wood Charles Thurber’s “Chirographer” typewriter, image from http://www.officemuseum.com via Wikimedia Commons. Today, with the emergence of new digital technology, older technology also known as low tech is slowly on [...]

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  • Object: Shredder

    Oct 04, 2018

    I-0393s Shredder/Grinder American 20th century Materials: Metal Grinders and shredders would have been a staple kitchen tool in many American households prior to the widespread use of electricity. These tools were used to make a variety of food products, and [...]

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  • Object: Camera

    Oct 04, 2018

    I-0069b Camera American Rochester, NY 1907-1925 Materials: Metal, Glass, Wood This object is a Seneca Competitor View Camera made by the Seneca Camera Manufacturing Company. The Competitor View was a part of the view camera series that the company created. [...]

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  • Object: Sewing machine

    Oct 04, 2018

    I-0087a Sewing Machine American 1915 Materials: Wood, Metal This object is a Singer Sewing Machine, it was made by the Singer Sewing Machine Company. Singer is an American company, founded by Isaac Merritt Singer and Edward Cabot Clark, that has [...]

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