Report – Friends Viewing Day

Special Viewing Day of Items from the Permanent Collections at the Haworth Art Gallery
 In April, The Friends of  Haworth Art Gallery  were able to view some of the weird and wonderful items that are the gallery  collections.

Three of the Friends have spent several years  of voluntary work documenting the collections  and chose items to view .

Three magnificent silver plated items by Elkington were the first to look at. These elaborately  ornamented pieces dated from the Victorian era  and, whilst not intrinsically valuable, represent Victorian workmanship at its best.

We also viewed the miniature portrait of William Haworth , which must have been a    treasured possession of Anne Haworth as a memorial of her brother. Anne had also saved  a sampler made by her mother, Mary Rushworth around 1810 . This had been discovered in a corner of the attic when we were documenting artifacts. A remarkable find.

By contrast, we were amused to read the poster from the public library, shown on the left. Quite who had the job of deciding who was “a dirty person”  we will never know.  Whilst we do not know the date of this poster, it dates from after 1908, the date when the  build of Accrington’s Carnegie Library was finished.

This poster reminded us of similar ones that were posted in the various mills across Lancashire and Yorkshire of “Rules of the Mill”.

Amongst the coin collection, we were lucky to be able to look at the medal from Accrington’s Mother and Baby Day held in Oak Hill Park in 1929.

Each child received a medal on a blue ribbon from the Mayor. Over 700 mothers and their babies attended and were treated to entertainment in the park and afternoon tea.

The two medals on red, white and blue ribbons were from the Jubilee of the Accrington Borough incorporation, the celebration being in 1928.

The photographic album that the Friends had had conserved was also on view, with the replica produced by Harry Emmett there to handle. The photographs were taken in 1921 following the conversion of Hollins Hill, Anne Haworth’s home, to Haworth Art Gallery after her death and her gift of the house and grounds to the people of Accrington.

We also looked at a Chinese porcelain bowl with pierced decoration, a Chinese tea bowl, Chinese slippers and pattons.  There were also household bills dating from just after World War ll , one of which was a rates bill for  around £5.

A fascinating morning for the Friends, which gave just a small insight into the treasures of the gallery.

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