Hello once again readers!
Today it is time for another mystery object. This object is a little different from the other mystery objects I have talked about before, however. I have actually done some research trying to figure out what today’s object is, but came up rather empty handed, with more questions than answers. Therefore, without further ado, here is today’s object: a metal rod with a handle!
As you can see in the photo, the object in question is just a long, metal rod with a handle. There is slight chipping at the end, presumably from frequent use. The question, however, it what this rod was used for. According to our system, this object is a “butter tool”, and that James E. Hart donated it, but there is not any more information. Specifically, it does not indicate how on Earth someone would use this rod in association with butter. It is slightly curved, so perhaps it was used to scrape butter off the inside of a butter churn?
Upon further inspection of the rod, one detail could help to reveal what this object really is. On the inside of the curve, near the handle, someone inscribed the word “Burrell”. When I found this, I did some digging on the internet to see what I could find about “Burrell”. According to what I could find, D. H. Burrell was an inventor who invented many contraptions that people used in the dairy industry. Unfortunately, my research did not find many details about his actual inventions. This is why I ended up with more questions than answers. Is this metal rod part of a larger machine? Should someone use the rod by itself? Is it actually even something that D. H. Burrell created, or is the “Burrell” inscription just a red herring? If any of you have any idea, please tell us! It will help me get some sleep at night finally knowing what the purpose of this strange rod is.
I believe an answer could be readily available here in Perry, since there are quite a few dairy farms around. For instance, Picket Fence Creamery is nearby, and they clearly would have some knowledge about “butter tools”. If any of you readers have your interests truly piqued by this metal rod, perhaps Picket Fence Creamery, or any dairy farmer around town for that matter, could shed some light on the matter!
Before I leave you today, there is one final thing to mention. The answer to the game we played last week! A few of you did guess, and they were good guesses! However, the correct answer is nothing. HPI Box 40 has nothing at all inside of it! This is why I do not see the need to keep this item in our collection.
Welcome to the Hometown Heritage (the branded name used by Fullhart Carnegie Charitable Trust) blog! My name is Jared Bloom, and I am the new intern here at Hometown Heritage. Since this is my first appearance on the blog, it seemed appropriate that I should introduce myself to you all, and tell you a little about who I am, what my goals are, and why I am with Hometown Heritage.
Let me start by saying a little more about myself. I graduated from the Perry High School in 2011, and I spent most of my childhood here as well, so I have many fond memories of our little town. I can remember the summer days of Friday Fest, with its stands of local products, live music, inflatable rides and more. I can remember when Shopko was still Pamida, and when Alco was still open for business. Even though some of these things have changed, there are plenty of familiar faces and places here in Perry, so the town feels like home. After High School, I chose to attend Iowa State University, and found that I was extremely interested in history. After spending four years there, I graduated with my Bachelor of Science in History. During my time in the History department, I found that I was quite interested in Classical history (which generally involves the ancient Greeks and Romans). As part of this, I learned a little bit of Latin (how to write and read it at least), and spent 3 weeks in Italy in May of 2014. I went to see all the major landmarks like the Colosseum, and we even had a trip down to Pompeii. I also saw many of the minor landmarks (a cat sanctuary called the Largo di Torre Argentina comes to mind), and even managed to miss a bus and get lost for a while. The trip was one of the greatest experiences of my life.
Looking toward the future, as a recent college graduate many opportunities have come knocking on my door and questioned what I was doing or where I was going. Often the response was “I haven’t thought about it yet” or “I’ll just go with the flow”, but eventually I had to sit down and think more seriously about the idea. As I did, a loose plan started to form in my head. After talking with a few professors and professionals, I decided that I am interested in working in a Museum setting, either as something like a Curator, or in a collections/preservation sort of role. I discovered that for me, this meant getting some good experience in the right kind of setting, and then going to a graduate school for a degree in Museum Studies. This is the part where Hometown Heritage enters into my plans.
Hometown Heritage is providing me with a wonderful opportunity to earn the kind of experience that I am looking for, and much more. I get to work not only with the kind of software that many museums use, but I also have the opportunity to earn some event managing experience, as there are various events coming up in this area that I am excited to have a hand in. However, experience is not the only reason I am here at Hometown Heritage. There is also the fact that this town, although not the first place I have memories of, is still my hometown, and it holds a special place in my heart. There is also plenty of history here in this town, even if it is not Classical History. I am aware of Hometown Heritage having one of the most extensive collections in the central U.S. for a small town. Within this collection, all of the stories that are told, the old photos and documents, the vintage collectables and works of art, and even the loose odds and ends have within them a special piece of this town’s history that I believe is worth preserving.
Preserving Perry’s history is a multifaceted job. Whether it be using our museum software, upcoming events, or simply digging through the mountains of boxes in our vault and backroom, I look forward to discovering new and exciting stories and experiences that I can share, with the rest of you, on this blog.