Cultures & Communities
Furniture, cooking wares, clothing, works of art, and many other kinds of artifacts are part of what knit people into communities and cultures. The Museum’s collections feature artifacts from European Americans, Latinos, Arab Americans, Asian Pacific Americans, African Americans, Gypsies, Jews, and Christians, both Catholics and Protestants. The objects range from ceramic face jugs made by enslaved African Americans in South Carolina to graduation robes and wedding gowns. The holdings also include artifacts associated with education, such as teaching equipment, textbooks, and two complete schoolrooms. Uniforms, insignia, and other objects represent a wide variety of civic and voluntary organizations, including youth and fraternal groups, scouting, police forces, and firefighters.
"Cultures & Communities - Overview" showing 1 items.
- The production and exchange of ceramics, metalwork, textiles, and other crafts were part of the economies of the Southwest and Mesoamerica centuries before the arrival of Africans, Spaniards, and other Europeans in the Americas. While central Mexico was almost immediately connected to the global economy after the Spanish conquest in the early 1520s, New Mexico and other frontier areas remained isolated and relatively self-sufficient until the mid-1800s. Once New Mexico was incorporated into the United States however, wagon trains and then railroads brought in new English-speaking residents and tourists, unsettling the economies of the established Hispano and Pueblo communities. By the early 20th century, a new livelihood emerged for local artisans—the creation of crafts for the tourist market. The tourist market demanded products that were as much about stereotypes as they were about authenticity. This Spanish Colonial Revival chair was made by Hipólito Sisneros in 1945 while he was a student at the Taos Vocational Educational School. Using a decorative technique called chip-carving, Sisneros crafted this chair in the style of New Mexican furniture from the early 1800s. After the 1930s, many Hispanics and Native Americans were enrolled in craft schools like this in an attempt by the state of New Mexico to support local craft cooperatives that targeted Anglo-American consumers.
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- Taos Municipal School
- Sisneros, H.
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- accession number
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- Data Source
- National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center