After more than 68 hours of research, patterning, cutting, and sewing, the replica of John Hancock’s velvet coat is finished and has been installed in the exhibit on the first floor of the Old State House.
Faneuil Hall is closing its doors for maintenance this winter. As stewards of the Old State House, we at the Bostonian Society are well aware that the preservation of Boston’s historic buildings requires constant effort. Faneuil Hall’s current closure gave us the chance to explore previous renovations to the building and take a closer look at three lottery tickets in our archives linked to a 1760s renovation.
The Bostonian Society recently received the generous donation of two etchings which present fictitious or imagined views of 1770's Boston. These etchings were done in 1778 in Augsburg by Franz Xaver Habermann, also known as Francois Xavier Habermann, an artist who never visited Boston or in fact got any closer to it than Italy. His images are obviously heavily influenced by the street scenes he saw around him and don't resemble the buildings that actually stood in Boston at the time.
In order preserve John Hancock's clothing, we are currently in the process of having replicas made. These replicas will allow us to return the originals to dark storage and therefore preserve them for future generations. Earlier this week, Master Tailor and Clothing Historian Henry Cooke was in the galleries, studying the original coat and waistcoat in order to begin the process of faithfully replicating them.