Today we are going to talk about some of the items that I have accessioned into our system recently. Unfortunately, most of it appears to be junk, and for good reason. People found all of these items in the bottom of the dumbwaiter shaft during the renovation of Hotel Pattee in the mid ninetees!
If you look at the pictures below, you may understand why I think a lot of this appears to be junk. There are things such as a smashed up pumpkin Halloween decoration, blocks of wood, lids to various cans and even a ball of twine. Some of the objects even look nasty. For instance, one bottle has what looks like some tar along the inside. Another bottle has a small amount of orange liquid, probably just some rusty water or something. In case you are worried, both bottles are sealed and neither of them were dangerous. They just look disgusting.
However, the renovators also found some interesting items in the bottom of that dumb waiter. There is a gavel from the International Rotary club, which is of some interest to us as it is a piece of Rotary Club history. The renovators also found two keys in the bottom of the shaft. These keys are very interesting: they have no labels, and are unmarked, so I have no idea what doors they open. Maybe they open some secret rooms in the Hotel! Most likely, however, they belong to doors that no longer exist due to the renovation.
Two final remarks about these items. First, if you seem anything in the pictures that you think has value, please let me know! Many of these items are a mystery, so I would greatly appreciate any help identifying them and their value. Finally, and perhaps the biggest mystery of all, is how these items got to the bottom of a dumbwaiter shaft in the first place. Who was putting these things into a dumbwaiter? I am fairly certain knobs for drawers and other things should not go into a dumb waiter, but I could be wrong. Since it has been awhile since the Hotel renovation, we may never know the answer.
Good afternoon readers!
Today we have another interesting, but ultimately useless, item from our collection. What makes this item truly useless is what is inside of it. In order to make this a little more fun, we are going to play a simple game. Here is how it works: I am going to describe everything that I can about this item, and I want all of you to try to guess what is inside it. To guess, all you have to do it comment on this post! I will reveal the answer in the next blog post. So, let us play “What’s in the box”!
Here at Hometown Heritage, we call the box in question “HPI Box 40”. As you can see in the picture, it is a wooden box. There are a multitude of scratches on the top of the box, indicating that is has been used a fair amount. The front of the box has a lightly metal decorated clasp to hold the box shut. It does not work very well, as the clasp does not stay completely down. The hinges on the back of the box have a similar design to the latch on the front, with the light flourishes. Both seem to be made of iron or some other gray colored metal. The bottom is just like the top: it has quite a few scratches, most likely indicating frequent use. The box is approximately 12 inches wide, 19 inches long and 3 inches high.
Here are a few final clues that may help you guess what is inside. The box is part of a group of items donated to us from the estate of Beulah Bentley Schluter. There are all kinds of items in this collection, ranging from Christmas letters to travel documents to various pictures. Beulah appeared to be someone interested in art, as included in the collection are also various drawings of hers. She was also a well-traveled woman, having been to Germany, Hawaii, New Zealand, and South America. As you can see, this box is very odd. In my opinion, it should not be in our collection.
These are all the clues I can give you, readers. Partly because I do not want to make it too easy to guess what is in this box, and partly because Beulah Bentley Schluter is somewhat of a mystery woman. What I have told you about her is almost all that I know of her. It would be great if, in addition to guessing what is in the box, any of you who knew her could tell more about her!
Salvēte (that is Latin for welcome!) readers!
Today, we are going to start a new kind of series of blog posts about something different. Normally, we would be talking about something that is interesting, or has some kind of mysterious story behind it. Starting with this post, however, we are going to be talking about some of the more ridiculous items in the collection here at Hometown Heritage. Now without sounding too offensive, these are the kinds of items that, when I first saw them, I questioned why they were actually in our collection. If you do not agree with what I think is questionable, please leave a comment and explain why!
First up on the list of not-so-interesting items is a blank piece of paper. Upon first glance, this single piece of paper seems like it has no business being in our collection at all. It has nothing written on it, and there appears to be no historical value in keeping it. In fact, it looks like the kind of thing that one would toss into the trash without a second thought.
However, something may make this piece of paper worth keeping: the header. Printed at the top of this piece of paper is “Hoagland Grocery Co.” and a few other things, such as the names Clyde R. Hoagland and Harry T. Hoagland. The reason this may make this piece of paper worth keeping is that Hoagland Grocery was an early grocery in Perry. It would be worthwhile to keep important documents and information about this early part of Perry’s history. That said, however, a blank charge slip from the grocery is not really an important document, nor does it reveal any important information. This comes back to something that we have talked about before on this blog: it is important to tell the younger generations the stories behind the things that you keep. For all I know, this blank piece of paper could actually be the last charge slip ever made for Hoagland Grocery. Or it could be the first one that was ever made! If this piece of paper had retained its story, it could be an amazing piece of history worth keeping in our collection. Now, however, people of my generation simply see it as something that we can toss into the trash, even if it should not be. To prevent this from happening, if any of you have information regarding this piece of paper or even Hoagland Grocery Co., plus come forward and tell us! We would be more than happy to record it so that others can remember it too.
Before I go, since this is going to be an ongoing group of blog posts, I have decided to give them the title "Scraps of the Past". This is due to most of them being "scraps" of things that may have been worth keeping at one point in time, but appear to have no value now.