McLoughlin House Furniture Conservation
In 2008, a National Park Service conservator assessed the wooden items on display at the McLoughlin House, particularly focusing on furniture. Several pieces were identified as high priorities for conservation, based both on their condition and their association with the McLoughlin family. In the summer of 2010, six items were conserved: a tea canister, dining table, chest of drawers, rocking chair, bookcase, and marble-top table. Most of the items were owned by Dr. John McLoughlin or members of his immediate family.
The conservation work was done by Jon Brandon of East Point Conservation in Brunswick, Maine. Rather than shipping the objects back to their facility, Jon agreed to treat them in a temporary conservation lab created in the upstair hallway of the McLoughlin House. Though some of the treatments had to be done while the house was empty, for safety reasons, Jon often worked on the pieces while the house was open. The work of museum professionals is often hidden from the public and this created an opportunity for visitors to see conservation in action, to ask questions, and for Jon to educate them about furniture preservation and conservation techniques.
Did You Know?
As the fur trade-era depot and headquarters for the Hudson's Bay Company's Columbia Department, did you know that over 61,000 animal pelts were shipped from Fort Vancouver to England in 1843 alone? This and many other stories are interpreted at Fort Vancouver National Historic Site. More...