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Keywords: Decorative Arts

Historical Items

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Item 11350

Thumb back fancy painted arm chair, Portland, ca. 1830

Contributed by: Old York Historical Society Date: circa 1830 Location: York; St. Albans; Portland Media: Maple, ash and birch primary woods

Item 26536

Abigail Babson theorem purse, ca. 1820

Contributed by: Maine Historical Society Date: circa 1820 Media: Tempera on velvet

Item 26537

Sewall cornucopia theorem, ca. 1825

Contributed by: Maine Historical Society Date: circa 1825 Media: Watercolor on velvet


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Art of the People: Folk Art in Maine

For many different reasons people saved and carefully preserved the objects in this exhibit. Eventually, along with the memories they hold, the objects were passed to the Maine Historical Society. Object and memory, serve as a powerful way to explore history and to connect to the lives of people in the past.


A City Awakes: Arts and Artisans of Early 19th Century Portland

Portland's growth from 1786 to 1860 spawned a unique social and cultural environment and fostered artistic opportunity and creative expression in a broad range of the arts, which flowered with the increasing wealth and opportunity in the city.


Drawing Together: Art of the Longfellows

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow is best know as a poet, but he also was accomplished in drawing and music. He shared his love of drawing with most of his siblings. They all shared the frequent activity of drawing and painting with their children. The extended family included many professional as well as amateur artists, and several architects.

Site Pages

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Site Page

Bowdoin College Museum of Art

View collections, facts, and contact information for this Contributing Partner.

Site Page

Early Maine Photography - Studio Portraits

Similarly, a fireman from Skowhegan and John Chase of Unity are seated in front of folk art backdrops painted in maritime themes.

Site Page

Thomaston: The Town that Went to Sea - The Edward O'Brien House

Each house had decorated vergeboards along the eaves, and porches extended the width of the front façades, wrapping around to side entries.

My Maine Stories

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Wabanaki Fashion
by Decontie & Brown

Keeping the spirit and memories of our ancestors alive through fashion and creativity

Lesson Plans

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Lesson Plan

Bicentennial Lesson Plan

Primary Sources: Daily Life in 1820

Grade Level: 6-8, 9-12 Content Area: Social Studies
This lesson plan will give students the opportunity to explore and analyze primary source documents from the years before, during, and immediately after Maine became the 23rd state in the Union. Through close looking at documents, objects, and art from Maine during and around 1820, students will ask questions and draw informed conclusions about life at the time of statehood.