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  • Treasure of the Month
    many of his Wild West Show members as they traveled the continent These years were important not only because they helped Imhof hone his artistic and technical abilities but because Imhof found his true artistic passion depicting Native Americans in a realistic and dignified manner Upon his return to the United States Imhof rented a studio in Flatbrush where he studied Iroquois Indians and continued his career in lithography photography and color printing In 1897 he married Sarah Ann Elizabeth Russell The two traveled extensively throughout Europe together until in 1905 they visited the Southwest for the first time The couple fell in love with the land and the people who lived there and in 1906 Joseph built a studio in Albuquerque By 1929 the couple moved to Taos permanently and built their home near the city s sacred mountains Joseph Imhof developed some peculiar habits as an artist that helped earn him the moniker the grand old man of the Pueblos He often asked his mostly Native American subjects to live with him before he painted them so that he could better capture their likeness This period also saw Imhof start the first lithography press in Taos and establish the area as a hotbed of artistic expression for years to come He passed away in 1955 in his adopted city Years later his wife Sarah remembered him as a gentle dignified man who loathed the publicity and the limelight that other artists seemed to seek On display were four notable greeting cards made by Imhof and sent to his friends and family during the holiday season The first is a lithograph with a Pueblo woman standing in front of a mission holding a pipe Her shawl covers everything but her head forcing the attention of the viewer to the

    Original URL path: http://rosenberg-library-museum.org/displays/treasure/2012/12-xmascards/imhof.htm (2016-04-26)
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  • Treasure of the Month
    about the development of African metalworks This makes dating pieces a difficult task and the possibility for forgery remains high Intricate testing is needed to examine the patina on a bronze piece before an accurate date can be determined Microscopic and macro photographic tests determine wear and damage to the outside surface of the bronze piece by examining layers of corrosion that may have settled on its surface The Library s Cameroon bronze chalice features a rich mottled patina and differences in its textures and thicknesses lend strength to its authenticity of being a genuine Benin bronze artifact The Library s Cameroon bronze chalice may have been cast by craftsmen of the outlying regions of the Benin Empire an empire that stretched from Nigeria through modern day Benin and Cameroon The Benin Empire of southwestern Nigeria flourished between the fifteenth and nineteenth centuries but was first founded in the tenth century AD by the Yoruba peoples an ethnic and linguistic group first established within the Ife kingdom as early as 500 300 BC Bronze casting was an important element of the Benin Empire for much of its existence and was first introduced in the twelfth century by a cousin empire the Ife Kingdom Benin bronzes often crafted for the oba king or for ceremonial purposes were cast in many forms like brass heads free standing figures plaques bells rattles masks jewelry and battle gear The technical accomplishment and artistic abilities achieved by the bronze casters of the Benin Empire have long been admired since the bronzes introduction to European audiences in the late nineteenth century Benin like characteristics of the chalice are its textures design and detailed features A similar tribe to the Benin Empire the Bamum Kingdom in central Cameroon also practiced bronze casting and the chalice has a

    Original URL path: http://rosenberg-library-museum.org/displays/treasure/2011/01-chalice/chalice.htm (2016-04-26)
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  • Treasure of the Month
    1800s by studying teeth tools and agents that have been discovered on Civil War battlefields Artifacts such as the dental kit can offer an almost visual account of what it must have been like to live during one of our nation s most gruesome events Dental health in the mid 1800s was not a common priority and most civilians only visited a dentist to have troublesome teeth extracted When the Civil War began in 1861 good dental health in addition to being between the ages of 17 45 was surprisingly a requirement of recruits for both sides of the conflict Dentists who were enlisted as soldiers of either army often kept their tools on hand to be of service wherever necessary A lack of formal dental care in the Union Army forced field surgeons to practice dentistry in the field whereas in the Confederate Army civilian dentists were hired under contract or trained soldiers were supplemented with extra supplies pay and rankings as hospital stewards As troublesome as it may be to imagine Union soldiers were only required to have six opposing upper and lower front teeth to become servicemen while Confederate soldiers were only required to have four opposing front teeth As battles waged forward and drafts increased men often removed their own front teeth to avoid enlistment This problem became so severe that army surgeons eventually refused to exempt soldiers whose mouths showed obvious signs of recent extractions The availability of supplies came to be the greatest difference in overall soldier health During the height of the Civil War typical daily dental practices could include twenty to thirty cavity fillings the extraction of fifteen to twenty teeth and the removal of cumbersome tartar all without the use of anesthesia Because of Northern blockades Confederate supplies dwindled and access

    Original URL path: http://rosenberg-library-museum.org/displays/treasure/2011/02-dental/dental.htm (2016-04-26)
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  • Treasure of the Month
    and Egyptian wall paintings they are associated with priests bishops kings and shepherds Canes are referenced in the Old and New Testament and staffs known as bourdons were used by pilgrims and Crusaders who travelled to the Holy Land during the eleventh through the thirteenth centuries Walking sticks could be crafted from simple materials or by elaborate methods using elephant or walrus ivory porcelain whale bone rhino horn exotic woods serpent skin tortoise shell cloisonné gems glass and precious metals The walking stick falls into four different categories of use and design including ethnic design folk art decorative and gadget canes Ethnic canes reflect cultural customs from around the world and canes from Africa Asia and Native American tribes are widely praised Scrimshaw canes or canes carved by sailors on the whaling ships of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries are made from whale bone and teeth and are the most popular folk art canes It was said during the seventeenth century that an aristocrat could easily spend 40 000 francs a year in decorative canes and jewelers and smiths across Europe were kept busy with orders Gadget canes are canes that serve dual purposes or hide treasures or weapons These canes could include binoculars seats music stands hammers swords razors spikes guns maps spears flasks fans or cosmetics and mirrors Walking sticks became symbols of authority and status over time By the sixteenth century these staffs were part of everyday fashion and were meant to be worn not merely just used The type of walking stick and its materials indicated rank and status and it was held that gentlemen carrying a cane could not be expected to perform manual labor By the Victorian era canes were in such demand that whole plantations were established to grow the reeds The cane

    Original URL path: http://rosenberg-library-museum.org/displays/treasure/2011/03-cane/cane.htm (2016-04-26)
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  • Treasure of the Month
    instant collectibles among hunters nature enthusiasts and art collectors alike The term duck stamp is rather misleading Duck stamps are not valid for postage and other migratory birds like geese and swans are often featured Ninety eight cents of every dollar generated from duck stamp purchases is revenue for the National Wildlife Refuge System and goes directly to the purchase or lease of wetland habitats Over 750 million dollars have been generated from duck stamp sales and these funds have helped purchase or lease 5 3 million acres of waterfowl habitat in the United States These protected habitats have also allowed mammals fish reptiles amphibians and plants that rely on the wetland areas to thrive and continue to ensure the safety of these vital ecosystems Each year s duck stamp image is chosen through a federally supported contest and judged by a panel of artists and wildlife experts The contest began in 1949 with 88 entries and over 2 000 drawings were received in 1981 The Junior Duck Stamp Contest first began in 1989 as an arts and education curriculum that teaches the importance of wetlands to thousands of school children Winning illustrations from junior state level contests compete for the honor to be turned into a stamp alongside the winning Federal Duck Stamp The Texas Coast and the Galveston Bay Area includes many National Wildlife Refuge Sites that are supported from the sales of Federal Duck Stamps thirteen NWR sites exist in the entire state Over five hundred species of birds reside winter or migrate through Southeast Texas and use the Galveston Bay estuary and wetlands system for food and shelter This bay system is the largest and most productive on the Texas coast providing nursery grounds for hundreds of species as well as contributing 1 3 of Texas

    Original URL path: http://rosenberg-library-museum.org/displays/treasure/2011/04-stamps/stamps.htm (2016-04-26)
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  • Treasure of the Month
    thousands of rare and interesting objects from around the world have been added to the collection Displayed in these pages are the Library s Treasures of the Month May 2011 Treasure of the Month Engelke Crockery House Furnishings During the Month of May the Rosenberg Library Museum featured relics from a fondly remembered Galveston business Engelke Crockery House Furnishings The Treasure of the Month is located on the library s

    Original URL path: http://rosenberg-library-museum.org/displays/treasure/2011/05-engelke/engelke.htm (2016-04-26)
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  • Treasure of the Month
    is of a design that was first published by Scottish mathematician James Gregory in 1663 The Gregorian telescope is an early type of reflecting telescope which uses a combination of curved mirrors to reflect light to form an image Reflecting telescopes were first produced in the mid 17th century as alternatives to refracting telescopes the earliest types of optical telescopes that use lenses to form images Refracting telescopes produce images that are subject to many types of optical distortion including color distortions and imperfections in image shape Because their lenses cannot be practically made larger than 1 meter in diameter reflecting telescopes are used In fact all major telescopes used in astronomical research are reflecting telescopes James Gregory s design the first reflecting telescope plan appeared in his 1663 publication Optica Promata His early attempts to build the telescope were not successful because according to his own confession he had no practical skill nor could find a capable optician to construct his design However the telescope did gain the interest of the scientific community including that of Robert Hooke who successfully built the telescope in 1673 Unfortunately by the time the Hooke produced the Gregorian telescope Isaac Newton had constructed his own reflecting telescope the Newtonian design Today the Gregorian telescope is a rare specimen and modern astronomers seldom encounter the full design Gregorian optics however are still used in large radio telescopes or telescopes that operate on radio frequencies with dish antennas One of the best examples of a radio telescope with Gregorian optics is the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico This telescope built between 1960 and 1963 was the first in history to directly image an asteroid It s been used in experiments for extraterrestrial communication and in the discovery of neuron stars As part of the Mary

    Original URL path: http://rosenberg-library-museum.org/displays/treasure/2011/06-tele/scope.htm (2016-04-26)
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  • Treasure of the Month
    the pair on display represent some of the earliest versions and were often engraved a practice that lasted until the early 1800s As the eighteenth century came to a close flatware design was simplified and sugar tongs became less ornate Sugar tongs helped spark new variations and uses for tongs which today include salads sandwiches ice cubes and even sardines and asparagus Passed down to John Lockhart 1895 1971 from his aunt Mary Elizabeth Lockhart Landes the great granddaughter of Mary Alexander Wallis the Lockhart sugar tongs have an engraving which reads M A Alexander 1776 daughter of John McKnitt Alexander who signed the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence and was Secretary of the Mecklenburg Convention of North Carolina May 1775 The Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence is believed by some to be the first declaration of independence made in the Thirteen Colonies Signed May 20 1775 by delegates in Charlotte it declared independence from Britain after the shocking news of the battle at Lexington The authenticity of the document has been disputed for over two centuries The original if there was one was lost until the document was republished in 1819 from notes of John McKnitt Alexander 1733 1817 No evidence of its publishing exists from 1775 and politicians in 1819 had no former recollection of its existence Many historians believe that the Mecklenburg Declaration from Mecklenburg County in North Carolina was a recreation of the Mecklenburg Resolves a set of radical resolutions passed late May 31 1775 and published in area wide newspapers that fell short of declaring independence Many arguments exist for and against the document s authenticity but for the state of North Carolina the declaration is a source of pride Both their seal and state flag bear the date of the declaration and May 20 was for

    Original URL path: http://rosenberg-library-museum.org/displays/treasure/2011/07-tongs/tongs.htm (2016-04-26)
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