From western forts to Victorian mansions and pivotal battlegrounds, the Texas Historical Commission's 20 state historic sites exemplify a breadth of Texas history. Come explore the real stories at the real places.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Before & After: Conserving Fort Griffin's Trunk

By Laura DeNormandie-Bass, chief curator for the THC Historic Sites

A traveling trunk from Fort Griffin State Historic Site was recently conserved at Texas A&M University’s Conservation Research Laboratory in College Station. The trunk was treated for metals deterioration, wood preservation, and paper conservation utilizing Japanese rice paper and a cellulose-based adhesive.

This particular travel/steamer trunk is composed of a tinned steel shell with wood slats and small wheels embedded on the bottom. The trunk appears to have belonged to “Caleb B. Cupp” of Colorado, TX, and the lock is stamped “PAT’D Mar. 69 & Apr. 77.” The inside of the trunk was papered at least twice, the first time with a pale pink, heavily water-stained paper and the second time with a white/neutral paper with dark stippling.

View photos of the trunk before and after conservation below:

Before conservation

After conservation

Before conservation

After conservation
 Before conservation

After conservation

Fort Griffin State Historic Site is located 15 miles north of Albany on U.S. Hwy 283, in the Texas Forts Trail Region.

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