Thursday, March 6, 2014

Mystery Artifact and Exhibit Opening!

Hello again!  The Museum staff has been very busy in the past few weeks preparing the museum for its reopening last Saturday, working to catalog and store the artifacts that came out of the old Prairie Stories exhibit, and installing a new temporary exhibit called Home Grown.

The exhibit opens Sunday, with a lecture by Sandy Mason from the University of Illinois Extension.  She will give an intriguing presentation on what it means to garden in today's world. We think Sandy says it best:

"Growing our own vegetables is as vital as it was a century ago; however the whys, hows and wheres have changed with our changing lifestyles. Discover how the old and the new have merged to create vegetable gardening in the 21st century."

Spring is almost here (we hope!), and this exhibit will make you even more excited to get outside in the sun and get your hands in the dirt!  While the cold and snow lingers, however, please join us at the Museum--we are open from 1pm-5pm daily, and admission is free!

We have two new display cases near the door to the Home Grown exhibit.  One features new acquisitions to the Museum's collections, and right now it showcases the Ohio/Nine Gal Tavern archaeological collection that was recently donated.   We hope you will come in and take a look before the artifacts are taken off display for conservation!

The second case showcases Mystery Artifacts, and this week's is a doozy!  Several staff members from around the preserve have been stumped by this item.  Here is a photo:

It is about 24" long and is made of forged iron (so it is very heavy)!  The head is a solid round piece approximately 1" thick, and it balances rather precariously on the square-footed stand.  If you would like to take a closer look at this fascinating artifact, stop by the Museum and check it out in person!

What is this item, and what was it used for?  Offer your guesses on Facebook or in the comments section below.  We hope to see you Sunday!

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