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Grant number like: PG-50266-08

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Chester County Historical Society (West Chester, PA 19380-2658)
Ellen Endslow (Project Director: May 2007 to July 2008)

Preservation Assistance Grants
Preservation and Access

$5,000 (approved)
$5,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
2/1/2008 – 7/31/2009

Costume and Costume Accessory Preservation Assessment

Hiring preservation consultants to conduct a preservation assessment of the society's textile collections. The clothing and clothing accessories include dresses, greatcoats, bonnets, petticoats, shoes, shirts, bibs, aprons, shawls, suspenders, and caps. These materials date from the 18th century, and originate mainly in Philadelphia and southeastern Pennsylvania.

The purpose of this project is to work with professionally trained consultants to survey the historically important collection of clothing and clothing accessories, dating from 1750 to the present, at the Chester County Historical Society (CCHS). This is the next preservation priority identified in an IMLS General Conservation Survey. The consultants will make a four-day site visit to CCHS and work with museum staff and trained volunteers to assess the condition of the objects and their current storage environment and to identify the strengths and weaknesses of the collection. Following the site visit, the consultants will provide a comprehensive written report. It will contain recommendations for: 1)improving the storage conditions and space use for the clothing and clothing accessories; 2) the conservation needs of individual objects; 3) how to respond to disasters that adversely affect textile objects; and 4) future acquisitions and deaccessions to strengthen the collection.