Kentucky Museum News
Kentucky Historical Society awards grant to support Taylor Collection
- Tiffany Isselhardt
- Tuesday, June 28th, 2022
The Kentucky Museum at WKU has received a grant from the Kentucky Local History Trust Fund to provide partial support for conservation of garments in the Mrs. A. H. Taylor Collection. Funds will be used to conserve the skirt of a circa 1898 wedding dress made by the Mrs. A. H. Taylor Company of Bowling Green.
The skirt is part of a two-piece garment that was partially conserved in 2021. The bodice of the garment is currently on view in Styles &thegistofit, an exhibition on Carrie Burnam Taylor, owner of a Bowling Green, Kentucky, clothing factory that made custom-fitted garments from 1880 to 1917. The collection documents female fashion and entrepreneurship at the turn of the twentieth century and includes several garments, documents, and photographs related to Taylor’s life company.
As part of the exhibition development process, two conservators with more than 40 years of combined experience assessed the costumes. The assessment identified which garments needed preventative conservation work and which had deteriorated beyond repair. Due to limited funding, only garments that were designated for display in the exhibition were conserved.
“Two garments were partially conserved before the exhibition,” stated Tiffany Isselhardt, Development and Marketing Manager at the Kentucky Museum. “We prioritized their second pieces – a wedding dress skirt and an evening dress bodice – as the final step in conserving this collection. This grant, as well as gifts from descendants of the Burnam-Taylor family and our community, will help us finish conservation and ensure that these incredible garments are available for study and exhibition well into the future.”
The Kentucky Museum is currently accepting donations to assist with conserving the garments, for which it needs $7,500 by August. Those interested in supporting conservation can make a gift online here.
About the Kentucky Local History Trust Fund
Part of the Kentucky Historical Society, the Trust Fund empowers local history organizations, libraries, and museums to apply for grants each year that support activities to strengthen their organizations. Eligible projects include, but are not limited to, local history education programs, collections care, local history publications or other media products, and exhibits. Taxpayer contributions make possible the Local History Trust Fund grant pool. People can check a box on their tax returns to contribute part or all of their refunds to the fund.
About the Kentucky Museum
Founded in 1939, the Kentucky Museum is a teaching institution with premier cultural collections that complement, support, and challenge the academic experiences of WKU students, faculty, and staff. It also provides a gathering place for our campus and community to come to know and celebrate who they are as individuals and as Kentuckians in the 21st century. The Museum serves Kentuckians and visitors from around the world through exhibitions, school and public programs, publications, and collections research.
For more information, contact Tiffany Isselhardt at email@example.com