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The Objects

The grant proposal listed ten possible objects from which the final six would be chosen: 1750s Silver teapot, Sunstone from the Mormon Temple at Nauvoo, Mary Todd Lincoln dress made by ex-slave Elizabeth Keckley, white/colored signs, wild west show poster and Theodore Roosevelt’s chaps, ballot box, Model T Ford, NRA Eagles, the first barbie doll, and Woolworth’s lunch counter. Of these, only three were selected for the project, but the list was only tentative and not intended to be exhaustive. This flexibility enabled the staff to do further research after receiving the grant, and they were able to select six objects that were available for photography and corresponded to ample research materials: Thomas Jefferson’s desk, 1848 gold nugget, Lincoln-Keckley dress, Progressive Era voting machine, Woolworth’s lunch counter, and short-handled hoe.

The Objects