Conservation DistList Archives [Date] [Subject] [Author] [SEARCH]

Subject: Chicago Area Conservation Group

Chicago Area Conservation Group

From: Craig Deller <craig>
Date: Wednesday, May 3, 2000
The Chicago Area Conservation Group is pleased to announce the
1999-2000 season finale.

Wet with Blood:
The Investigation of Mary Todd Lincoln's Cloak
Held at the Chicago Historical Society, Clark Street at North Ave.
Tuesday, May 23rd, 2000
6 pm

For more information, please contact Craig Deller <craig [at] deller__com>

One of the most powerful artifacts in the Chicago Historical
Society's collection is a cloak allegedly worn by Mary Todd Lincoln
to Ford's Theatre on the night her husband was assassinated. Mary
purportedly gave the cloak to her seamstress Elizabeth Keckly, a
former slave and personal confidant, who swore that it was "wet with
blood" on the fateful night. However, the blood may have been Major
Henry Rathbone's, who shared the presidential box and was slashed by
John Wilkes Booth's knife when he attempted to capture the assassin.

An investigative team of historians and scientists is examining the
authenticity of the cloak and other Lincoln assassination relics,
including allegedly bloody bed linens, stained dress fragments, and
hair samples. Principal investigators include Dr. David Stoney,
Director of McCrone Research Institute, and Dr. Robert Gaensslen,
Director of Forensic Science at the University of Illinois, Chicago.
This partnership will open new avenues of exploration by applying
forensic and micro-analytical tools to historical research. The
project presents a unique opportunity to engage the public in the
compelling search for historical and scientific authentication, as
well as the intricacies of museum conservation. A series of
educational programs have been designed to meet the enthusiastic
public and professional response to this research, including a
Distance Learning Center program for Chicago area high school
students and a virtual Internet exhibition.

Nancy Buenger joined the staff of the Chicago Historical Society as
Textile Conservator in 1992. She completed her graduate conservation
studies at the Courtauld Institute's Textile Conservation Centre,
Hampton Court Palace, London in 1989, and internships at the Ancient
Monuments Laboratory, English Heritage and the Department of
Anthropology, Field Museum of Natural History. She completed
research on the Lincoln assassination relics as her graduate thesis
for an M.A. in Liberal Studies at Northwestern University with a
concentration in American Studies.

                  Conservation DistList Instance 13:54
                  Distributed: Wednesday, May 3, 2000
                       Message Id: cdl-13-54-014
Received on Wednesday, 3 May, 2000

[Search all CoOL documents]