History Flows To Hubbard’s McBride House | News, Sports, Jobs

There is something to be said about the 129 year old chicken feathers that look like they were plucked yesterday.

Likewise, vintage ostrich feathers perch royally on an elegant lady’s hat. Victorian ladies had a weakness for feathers – they liked them very much.

They loved them so much that they adorned their hats with aviary wonders and were extremely proud to turn even modest feathers, like chicken feathers, into intricate works of art.

Among the historic pieces donated to the McBride House to Hubbard and displayed on a wall in the home’s dining room is a shadow box containing an ornate design. However, appearances can be deceptive. The flower arrangement is actually made up of chicken feathers, superbly arranged to appear as delicate white flowers in an elaborate horseshoe pattern. Considering how unsuspecting it is, it is popular among visitors to the home of the Hubbard Historical Society.

Online research has uncovered some interesting facts about this art form. A blog written by the Clarke Historical Museum in Old Town Eureka, Calif., Notes that the chicken feather art was the work of Victorian housewives who were proud of “beautify” their homes and were active amateurs for this purpose.

The hobbies included making “… three-dimensional crowns and ornaments made from a variety of materials, including thread, feathers, and, perhaps surprisingly, human hair.” “ explains the blog.

This unconventional work of art usually commemorated events, both gloomy and festive, and when shaped like a horseshoe, it symbolized good luck. This is the case with this particular work of art, created by Hubbard resident Lulu Baird Pettit in 1893.

The saying goes that birds of a feather flock together, and as such, this framed feather work isn’t the only ruffled item in the House of McBride. Ladies of the Victorian era (typically 1837 to 1901), also embellished themselves with feathered hats, to such an extent that the custom caused great controversy when certain species of birds, coveted only for their feathers, became on the way. of disappearance. The fashion trend has finally faded.

Yet the evidence of the “Era of feathers” stays in vintage callbacks like these to keep visitors looking for other intriguing items to pull from pages of history.

The Hubbard Historical Society is headquartered in the 138-year-old McBride House at 27 Hager St. in Hubbard. The company has three regular meetings a year, a summer picnic and a Christmas party. For more information, email Robin Zambrini, Secretary, at [email protected]

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