Posts Tagged ‘collectors’

The City Reliquary Proudly Presents: P.S. NYC: Artifacts from New York City Public Schools 1850-1970

As students and teachers return to their classrooms this fall, they follow a 215-year-old tradition of free public schools in New York City. Marty Raskin, lifelong New Yorker, proud alumnus of New York City’s public school system, and retired schoolteacher, has spent decades amassing a collection of NYC Board of Education materials reflecting a significant period of this history, now on view at the City Reliquary Museum. 

Mr. Raskin’s interest in collecting NYC public school memorabilia stems from his own fondly-remembered student experience. Attending P.S. 202 in East New York, he recalls, was deeply formative: “The teachers, principals, and youngsters I grew up with made school an essential part of my life, and helped make me who I am. There was an incredible loving, caring atmosphere there. I became friends with some of my teachers and remained friends with them my entire life.” Mr. Raskin began by collecting Parker Duofold fountain pens of the style used by one of his instructors, and his collection grew from there to include school records, class photos, clothing, building fixtures, furniture, and teaching equipment. A dunce chair, used in the 1850s when pupils were taught in one large schoolroom, and a mechanical eraser cleaner, used in the now-bygone days of chalkboards, are two highlights of the collection on display.

This exhibition illustrates the lived experience of generations of NYC public school students: their fashions, tokens of school spirit, classroom decorations and attendance records. It inevitably invites comparison to the visitor’s own school experience, whether in New York City or abroad. Mr. Raskin’s positive schooling experience inspired a devotion to preserving the history of NYC public education. In prompting visitors to reflect on the similarities and differences with their own education, the exhibition asks them also to consider how to provide to all students the supportive atmosphere experienced by Mr. Raskin, and what those students might achieve as a result.

Mr. Raskin gladly accepts donations of NYC public school memorabilia. He can be reached at memorabuti@gmail.com.

Collectors’ Night 2019!

"Collectors" spelled out using different vintage objects.

Saturday, September 7, 2019 6:00-9:00 p.m. Tickets available at the link!

At Our Lady of Mount Carmel, 275 N. 8th Street, Williamsburgh, Brooklyn, NY

General admission tickets $20 /$10 discounted tickets available to presenting collectors and City Reliquary Members.

The City Reliquary is proud to present our 14th Annual Collectors’ Night! Every year, collectors and archivists – whose collections run the gamut from loose groupings to the hyper-specific – display their treasures to the public and share their stories in a rapid-fire show and tell. It is an opportunity to get up close with obsessive labors of love.

Our featured presenter on September 7 will be architect and NYU Professor Louise Harpman, who will be speaking about her collection of coffee cup lids! Her recent book (co-written with Scott Specht) on the surprisingly complex design of this ubiquitous yet commonly overlooked item has received rave reviews, and she even acts as a consultant on coffee cup lid design from time to time!

We’ll also have a very special live model presentation of handmade vintage Hungarian dresses from director, actor, and fashion maven Syrie Moskowitz!

In addition, we’ll have our usual eccentric variety of collections – check out these photos of past editions! Small collections of large things. Large collections of small things. Commonplace items with a singular theme. Vintage, obscure, and ephemeral. Precisely laid out vitrines or piles of whatsits. You’ll see it all!

Do you have a collection you’d be interested in displaying at Collectors’ Night 2019? Big or small, loosely grouped or exactingly themed, obscure or commonplace, vintage or brand new – we’d love to see it! Follow this link to complete a brief application form. If accepted, you’ll receive a code for discount tickets and special instructions. We’ll try to get back to you speedily – usually within a day.

We hope to see you on September 7 as a collector or guest!

What’s New in our Making A Museum Exhibit? The 1939 World’s Fair Collection of Virginia McClellan Moskowitz

A major part of the City Reliquary’s mission is to elevate everyday objects and the stories of everyday New Yorkers. We love and celebrate the passion and curatorial skill of amateur collectors. With this collection of 1939 World’s Fair memorabilia, we showcase the work of an amateur collector who became a professional: Virginia McClellan Moskowitz.

In 1939, Virginia, a nurse from Mount Vernon, NY, attended the World’s Fair in New York City. The experiences and sights she witnessed stayed with her her entire life, and inspired her to collect many different types of souvenirs reflecting her fond memories.

After retiring from the nursing profession, Virginia’s love of collections led her to become Mount Vernon’s town historian. Her enthusiasm, and the local history she passed on, is fondly remembered by those she met, and her legacy is inspiring a new generation of local historians today.