Men's Clothing & Military Garments
Extensive holdings of men's clothing and military garments, worn by men and women are cared for in the Clothing and Textiles Division.
The collection contains more than 1,500 items of men's attire from beautiful 19th-century suspenders to cowboy boots and hats. The earliest dated examples are from the time of Spanish settlement of the region and consist of a metal helmet and breast-plate. 18th Century men are represented by two beautiful needleworked Bargello folding wallets from a time when men dressed as elegantly as women.
Many early pieces are completely hand-stitched such as a lightweight natural linen summer frock coat from 1825-1835. Many wedding tuxedos, and beautifully tailored men's suits are part of the collection as well as more specific items like a Zoot suit jacket from the 1940s and patched blue jeans from the 1970s.
Almost 800 items related to military service by both men and women are held in the Museum's collection. Military uniforms, especially those of the 20th century were made with high-quality materials. They were worn for a particular purpose and outlasted that purpose. In many cases, the person who wore them could not get into them again a few years after their service. Therefore many survive. Military uniforms represent a special time in the lives of those who wore it and an important service to our country for their descendants. The Museum holds a representative collection of these garments of military service.