Jon Crispin's Notebook

Willard Suitcase / Benjamin M.

Posted in History by joncrispin on 28/01/2014

I often talk about the unique nature of the suitcase collection, and at times refer to the truly incredible job the New York State Museum did in preserving the cases and their contents.

The above photo is a great example of the museum’s work.  The only items in Benjamin’s case were the original label, a toothpick, and a tiny scrap of paper.  When we opened this case, the label was in one archival bag, and the toothpick and paper scrap were in another.  This may be something only museum curators and conservators can truly appreciate, but we are all beneficiaries of the care and concern shown to these materials.

I also often mention the major contribution Peggy Ross makes to this project, but today she really did something huge.  Over the last few months she has been working on a database of everything we have shot and what is left to do.  She made this list while I was shooting today, and just seeing it made me feel that not only have we made real progress, but now being able to complete a documentation of the entire collection seems within reach.  We now know exactly what remains to be shot and, that makes me feel really good.

It was great to see my friend Connie Houde who was working at the storage facility today.  She is on staff at the museum and is also a really interesting photographer.  She’s been working on updating her website and you should check it out here.

Thanks for following.  Cheers, Jon

2 Responses

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  1. Tania M said, on 29/01/2014 at 12:20 pm

    I love the fabric, I am guessing it is the liner in the suitcase.

    • joncrispin said, on 30/01/2014 at 12:08 pm

      Yep, that’s it. The linings of the cases are sometimes beautiful. Thanks for following. Jon


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