Posts Tagged With: docents

MYSTERY ANTIQUES, PEND OREILLE COUNTY MUSEUM

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My daughter-in-law sent me a picture of an item from an antique store. The store owner couldn’t identify the object.  Laurie thought, since I go to so many museums, I might be able to help.  Well folks, I’m at a loss. I hope somebody out there might know what it is. (You can click on it to enlarge the picture.)

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Same item with the cover closed. I can’t even figure out how the cover closed? It sort of reminds me of a catering dish of some sort.

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We zapped through the panhandle of Idaho, with a night at Sand Point, and slipped into Washington State at Newport. The Pend Oreille County Museum there is a terrific visit, not only because of the great collections and multiple buildings, but because the docents are so friendly and helpful. I couldn’t identify the item above and the docent demonstrated it for me. There was no tag because they don’t know what it is either? We both laughed. It has a bellows and obviously puffs something  out of the rather large hole at the point. But, what? If you know, please satisfy our curiosity.

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Then she took me over to a cabinet of items they have not been able to identify. They are numbered and she has set out a paper and pen for people to guess what they might be. #10 looks like it could be a nail puller, except it doesn’t look strong enough. # 7 isn’t a bell. It has two big screws on one side of it.DSC01019 (Copy)

I turned it around to the opposite side for a better look.

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The inner works of #5 make me think it could be a telephone lineman’s test kit?

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This Springfield Morgan Envelope Company gadget is not an envelope opener.  The handle on the right lifts up and down. The gadget is all hand-operated and a mystery?

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#’s 6 and 8?  Six resembles a honey dipper without the knob on the end. Eight resembles a wool carder or maybe an animal grooming tool?

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The copper comb, you can’t tell it has fine teeth, has a heat protected handle and might be a hair straightener or curler?  #4, a possible gear, definitely a machine part.  (Sorry the picture is so poor.)

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These home made tools didn’t have a tag either? Maybe fruit pickers like apples or cherries.  But, apples and cherries have spurs. These gadgets would damage the spurs.

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One item the docents make and sell in the gift shop is this “button buzzer”. a toy my generation of kids made and played with. She likes educating visiting children about such gadgets.  She told me that kids today, some of them, have never even seen a dial phone.  We had fun.

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The museum is a complex of preserved buildings like this settlers cabin.

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Two small chapels. This one room for one person for private meditation with an altar and stained glass windows.

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This chapel has two pews enough to seat four people.

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This was a first for me. A root cellar. I thought, how nice. You can walk in through doors like a little house and get into the root cellar. Except, this one didn’t go underground like they were meant to be. Maybe, in a winter clime, they prevent food from spoiling by freezing. In Michigan as a child, the root cellar was underground and held potatoes, cabbage, turnips, carrots, rutabagas and apples. Mostly root vegetables. Thus the name.  A sloped piece of tin kept the snow from blocking the cellar doors. Down the musty steps and onto a dirt floor with hay bales holding boxes of good stuff.

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This cabin chimney is stone at the bottom. DSC01078 (Copy)

Above the stone, the chimney is wood strips with cement between them. A fire hazard? Naw! Nobody thought it dangerous.

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Because on the inside of that cabin is the only part that touched fire with a generous (joking) hearth. Oh,my.

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There are about a dozen buildings, plus three giant sheds like this with much to see.

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These docents joked that the woman was doing all the work while the men stood around and watched. She was making a flower bed around the ice house. There is a fire look out, a train car with signals and stuff, farm machinery, a dynamite shack and…you just have to see it for yourself. Nice, nice place. Two big buildings with the collections.

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I saw a lot of things I’d never seen before and this easy to use sock making machine I had never even heard of before.

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The all volunteer staff of docents  knew how to make a sock. Super! The docents made this such a fun place to visit.

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After the museum, we met Jim’s friends that live in Newport,  Jim and Sharon Davison. Jim and Jim spent the winter of 2001-2002 deep in the Baja, a six month small caravan of RVing friends. They share a lot of memories of that trip to Mexico. And, as it turned out. Sharon has volunteered for the Museum and provided the church doors for one of the little churches. Jim says, the only trouble with living on the road is you see your friends so infrequently.

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