Weekly Collection Spotlight
All summer long we’ll be sharing a weekly collection spotlight that showcases some of the unique items that we care for at the Erie Canal Museum. If you want to help us care for and display these items, you can click the PayPal button below to donate to our Curatorial Fund.
WEEK 1: Syracuse Volunteer Life-Saving Corps (00.1255 )
Here is a wonderful image from the last bit of the 19 th century. It shows five members of the Syracuse Volunteer Life-Saving Corps demonstrating a rescue alongside the Erie Canal. Life-saving supplies and equipment were kept on all the Canal bridges in Syracuse, and these volunteers helped to mitigate the risk of drowning in the Canal.
WEEK 2: Carved Wooden Canal Workers (6) [PC 2017.04.01]
These six canal worker figures are a recent addition to the Erie Canal Museum’s collection. They were carved by Max Schwegler, a local artist, in the 1980s. They were never completed, but the level of detail shown is positively delightful!
WEEK 2: Brown’s Mule Engraving Plate [PC 1998.9]
This metal plate dates to the 1920s and is a section of a mold used to stamp Brown’s Mule plug tobacco. Brown’s Mule was a product of the Pinkerton Tobacco Company of Owensboro, Kentucky. The entire mold was placed in the bottom of a wooden frame. The tobacco was poured into the frame, pressure was added and the tobacco was left to cure. After curing, the tobacco was cut and packaged with the imprint of Brown’s Mule marking the plug. Mules were both a symbol of the agricultural South and the Erie Canal!