• 68°

‘Life Events and Rites of Passage’ exhibit opens Sunday at Rowan Museum

By Susan Shinn
Salisbury Post
Births, relationships, weddings, funerals.
All are life events and all are celebrated in a new exhibit at Rowan Museum.
“Life Events and Rites of Passage” opens Sunday with a reception from 1 to 4 p.m. at the museum, 202 N. Main St.
This exhibit evolved from quite an unusual piece.
In the mid-1880s, Ella E. Kluttz created a friendship wreath from the hair of 32 women who had, at one time or another, been students at Mount Amoena Academy in Mount Pleasant.
The hair flowers are mounted in a heart shape, surrounded by green leaves.
Their teacher was Miss Ella B. Shirey.
Lucetta J. Brown, one of those students, is the great-grandmother of Kaye Brown Hirst, the museum’s executive director.
The school is now the Eastern Cabarrus Historical Museum, and that museum has provided some assistance about the wreath, although they have no records of students before 1889.
Hirst, however, says that the students were all from southeastern Rowan County, and most likely attended Ebenezer or Organ Lutheran churches.
“It is a phenomenal piece,” Hirst says.
The wreath will be on display, along with baptismal gowns, wedding gowns and mourning clothing ó from the museum’s collection and on loan from local residents.
A beautiful long, white Rothschild christening gown is on exhibit, along with elaborate Italian-style christening gowns.
Susan Waller, a board member who has helped curator Mary Jane Fowler assemble the exhibit, points out a half-mourning dress.
During the first year of mourning, women wore all black. During the second year, they could add touches of purple, lavender or white, Waller says.
This particular dress is from about 1900.
Mourning jewelry ó in black and gold ó will be on display. Some of the jewelry is made with the hair of the deceased.
The detailing, Waller says, is “mindboggling.”
A blue wedding dress from the 1940s belonged to Madeline Fittipaldi Horrocks, the great aunt of Barbara Franklin.
Irene zum Brunnen Purcell, one of the museum’s early docents, married in the early 1940s. Her cream-colored dress is on display, along with her picture and Horrocks’ picture.
An intricate veil belonging to the late Lois Brown Haynes is shown, along with her portrait. She married Earl Haynes on Nov. 3, 1956.
She also had worn a dark green bridesmaid’s dress in December 1949.
The exhibit will remain on display through Aug. 30. For more information, call Rowan Museum at 704-633-5946.

Comments

Comments closed.

BREAKING NEWS

Kannapolis Police searching for suspect who fled scene of homicide

Education

RSS superintendent talks district’s future, strategic plan survey

News

Complaints and fines pile up against unpermitted landfill in southwest Rowan County

College

Catawba baseball: Crowd comes out to say goodbye to Newman Park

Lifestyle

History is a great teacher: Farming has helped shape Rowan County

Business

‘A safe place for them’: Timeless Wigs and Marvelous Things celebrates fifth anniversary

China Grove

County will hear request for more tree houses, hobbit-style homes in China Grove

Coronavirus

Livingstone College partners with Health Department to administer 500 Pfizer vaccinations

Education

‘Elite and it shows’: Staff at Partners in Learning at Novant celebrate news of national accreditation

Business

Biz Roundup: Food Lion earns Energy Star award for 20th consecutive year

Columns

Ester Marsh: What body type are you?

Nation/World

The queen says goodbye to Philip, continues her reign alone

Nation/World

Worldwide COVID-19 death toll tops a staggering 3 million

Nation/World

US, China agree to cooperate on climate crisis with urgency

Nation/World

Sikh community calls for gun reforms after FedEx shooting

High School

North Rowan romps into second round of football playoffs

Nation/World

FBI had interviewed former FedEx employee who killed eight

Crime

Gastonia man sentenced for crash into restaurant that killed his daughter, daughter-in-law

Nation/World

Some call for charges after video of police shooting 13-year-old in Chicago

Business

State unemployment rate falls to 5.2% in March

Coronavirus

NASCAR approach to virus vaccine varies greatly

News

Judge rejects Cherokee challenge against new casino in Kings Mountain

Elections

Jackson tops NC Senate fundraising; Walker coffers also full

Local

Kiwanis Pancake Festival serves thousands of flapjacks for charity