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Storage Secrets - The Kitchen

By Pati Githens (Programs and Partnership Manager)


Welcome to the Monmouth County Historical Association's off-site storage! This is the warehouse that holds objects in the collection that are not on display. This is the place that holds the secrets and stories of artifacts that have been donated, found, or given to us over the last 120+ years that the association has been around.


But today, we are going to open some cabinets and drawers to see what secrets they hold. We will be looking at kitchen implements, which in many ways, seems like such a mundane topic, but as we look at the pieces, think about how kitchen utensils and tools have changed - or maybe not - over the last 150 to 200 years.


We start with a simple, wooden soap dish that was found on a beach after the New Era ship was wrecked off the coast of Deal in 1854. Unfortunately, many of the travelers from the ship perished in the wreck. From there, Bernadette, our Director of Collections, tells us about several other tools and implements that were often used in kitchens across the county from the 18th to the early 20th century.


Butter molds and paddles - why were they made from wood? We have about a dozen Dutch cookie molds that made special occasions cookies, such as a person's 40th birthday. A 19th-century spice box that still holds the smells of the spices they contained over 100 years ago. We even have a squirrel nutcracker made by someone with a sense of humor!

We do have one mystery item in our video. We know what it is and you can probably make a guess as to what it is. Tell us in the comments on Facebook or here and we will let you know in our next video if anyone was correct!


Enjoy learning about the secrets that our collections storage holds! Come visit our collection virtually at E-Museum. See you soon!


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70 Court Street

Freehold NJ 07728

732 - 462 -1466

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Monmouth County Historical Association received an operating support grant from the New Jersey Historical Commission, a division of the Department of State.