Handkerchief

Donated by Lillian Howard

This handkerchief belonged to Alpha “Alphie” Williams, who was born near War Eagle (Madison County) in 1907, the youngest of eight children. The Williams family moved to the south Madison County community of St. Paul, where Alpha lived until she was in her twenties. She taught school for a time in Madison County, then graduated from the University of Arkansas and attended graduate school at the University of Chicago’s School of Social Services Administration. Williams went on to become a social worker in Indiana, Missouri, and Arkansas. Her career also included working for the United Service Organizations (USO) and also for the Arkansas state welfare system, where she specialized in cases involving abused children.

Alpha Williams eventually came back home to south Madison County, where she lived until her death in 1993.

 

 

Donated by Lillian Howard

This handkerchief belonged to Alpha “Alphie” Williams, who was born near War Eagle (Madison County) in 1907, the youngest of eight children. The Williams family moved to the south Madison County community of St. Paul, where Alpha lived until she was in her twenties. She taught school for a time in Madison County, then graduated from the University of Arkansas and attended graduate school at the University of Chicago’s School of Social Services Administration.  Williams went on to become a social worker in Indiana, Missouri, and Arkansas. Her career also included working for the United Service Organizations (USO) and also for the Arkansas state welfare system, where she specialized in cases involving abused children.

Alpha Williams eventually came back home to south Madison County, where she lived until her death in 1993.

Home Legion Medal

Donated by Paula Thompson

Home Legion Medal of Distinguished Service in HomemakingIn 1944, homemakers across America were given the opportunity to join the Betty Crocker Home Legion, an outreach project offered through the Betty Crocker Radio Cooking School. Membership in the cooking school was of charge upon completing a registration form and answering a list of questions designed to demonstrate a homemaker’s skills in meal-planning, household economy, and other domestic skills. The questionnaires were reviewed by a panel of “experienced homemakers,” and those who passed muster were awarded this pin-backed medal (it measures about 1.75 inches in size), along with a suitable-for-framing copy of the Homemakers Creed:

I believe homemaking is a noble and challenging career.
I believe homemaking is an art requiring many different skills.
I believe homemaking requires the best of my efforts, my abilities, and my thinking.
I believe home reflects the spirit of the homemaker.
I believe home should be a place of peace, joy, and contentment.
I believe no task is too humble that contributes to the cleanliness, the order, the health, the well being of the household.
I believe a homemaker must be true to the highest ideals of love, loyalty, service, and religion.
I believe home must be an influence for good in the neighborhood, the community, the country.

This is to certify that [member’s name] is a member of the Home Legion dedicated to good homemaking for a better world.

Signed, Betty Crocker

By the late 1940s, over 70,000 women were members of Betty Crocker’s Home Legion program.

By the way, Betty Crocker is not a real person, but was born in 1921 as part of an advertising campaign for Washburn-Crosby Company, a flour milling company that was the forerunner of General Mills.

Donated by Paula Thompson

In 1944, homemakers across America were given the opportunity to join the Betty Crocker Home Legion, an outreach project offered through the Betty Crocker Radio Cooking School. Membership in the cooking school was of charge upon completing a registration form and answering a list of questions designed to demonstrate a homemaker’s skills in meal-planning, household economy, and other domestic skills. The questionnaires were reviewed by a panel of “experienced homemakers,” and those who passed muster were awarded this pin-backed medal (it measures about 1.75 inches in size), along with a suitable-for-framing copy of the Homemakers Creed:, along with a suitable-for-framing copy of the Homemakers Creed:

I believe homemaking is a noble and challenging career.
I believe homemaking is an art requiring many different skills.
I believe homemaking requires the best of my efforts, my abilities, and my thinking.
I believe home reflects the spirit of the homemaker.
I believe home should be a place of peace, joy, and contentment.
I believe no task is too humble that contributes to the cleanliness, the order, the health, the well being of the household.
I believe a homemaker must be true to the highest ideals of love, loyalty, service, and religion.
I believe home must be an influence for good in the neighborhood, the community, the country.

This is to certify that [member’s name] is a member of the Home Legion dedicated to good homemaking for a better world.

Signed, Betty Crocker

By the late 1940s, over 70,000 women were members of Betty Crocker’s Home Legion program.

By the way, Betty Crocker is not a real person, but was born in 1921 as part of an advertising campaign for Washburn-Crosby Company, a flour milling company that was the forerunner of General Mills.

 

Child’s Rocking Chair

Jack Elzey with the family cats, dog, and child’s rocking chair, Madison County, circa 1910. William H. Chenault Collection (S-2005-37-62)

Donated by William H. Chenault

This child’s rocking chair first belonged to Netia Burkett Elzey (1888-1965), who lived her whole life near the Madison County community of Marble. Netia married Walter Harrison “Watt” Elzey (1885-1958) in 1906. The Elzeys farmed and raised three children—Jack, Lloyd, and Viola.

Watt Elzey liked to take photographs in his spare time, and he often used Netia’s little rocker as a prop in family photos. The chair suffered a broken leg in the 1940s or 1950s, but was later repaired by Netia and Watt’s son Lloyd.

 

Donated by William H. Chenault

This child’s rocking chair first belonged to Netia Burkett Elzey (1888-1965), who lived her whole life near the Madison County community of Marble. Netia married Walter Harrison “Watt” Elzey (1885-1958) in 1906. The Elzeys farmed and raised three children—Jack, Lloyd, and Viola.

Watt Elzey liked to take photographs in his spare time, and he often used Netia’s little rocker as a prop in family photos. The chair suffered a broken leg in the 1940s or 1950s, but was later repaired by Netia and Watt’s son Lloyd.

Jack Elzey with the family cats, dog, and child’s rocking chair, Madison County, circa 1910. William H. Chenault Collection (S-2005-37-62)

Fort Leonard Wood Pillow Sham

Donated by Norman and Elsie Young

Norman Young (1913-1989) was born near the Madison County community of Wesley. He enlisted in the Army in 1943, trained at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri, and served with the Army Corps of Engineers. Young’s overseas tour of duty took him to Italy.  PFC Norman Young was discharged from service on October 17, 1945. He returned home to Northwest Arkansas, married Elsie Cress, and worked as a custodian at the University of Arkansas.

During World War II, souvenir pillow shams were popular gifts sent from soldiers to family and friends back home. This sham boasts a golden castle in the upper left hand corner, the symbol for the Army Corps of Engineers. In the upper right corner, the blue star on a red and white background is a symbol used by the Army Service Forces from March 9, 1942 through June 11, 1946. The large symbol in the center of the sham represents Fort Leonard Wood’s Engineer Replacement Training Center. The phrase “Victoria Ex Scientia” means “Victory from Knowledge.”

Bustle

Donated by Annabel Searcy

Bustles were used mainly in the mid-to-late nineteenth century to expand and support the back of a woman’s dress. This “Taylor’s Cushion No. 2” woven wire bustle dates from the early 1900s, fairly late in the lifespan of these padded undergarments. By the early 1910s, the bustle had been replaced by the long corset which shaped more of the body then just the back of the dress.

View Henry H. Taylor’s 1900 bustle patent.