• Image of the reconstructed stockade at Fort Vancouver and Pearson Air Museum looking northeast from the Land Bridge.

    Fort Vancouver

    National Historic Site OR,WA

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  • Vistor Center Temporarily Relocates to Pearson Air Museum on Sep 15, 2014

    The Visitor Center operation will temporarily relocate to Pearson Air Museum, beginning on Monday, September 15, 2014, while the visitor center is rehabilitated. More »

Conservation of Marguerite McLoughlin's Sewing Cabinet

Marguerite's sewing cabinet

Marguerite McLoughlin's Chinese lacquer sewing cabinet, ca. 1835, on display at the McLoughlin House


In 2009, MPF Conservation performed conservation treatment on Marguerite McLoughlin's Chinese lacquer sewing cabinet, ca. 1835, which is on exhibit at the McLoughlin House. The cabinet is said to have been a gift from Dugald McTavish, a clerk at Fort Vancouver, and is one of the original family pieces in the collection.

The cabinet needed a great deal of treatment: leg joints needed to be shimmed due to shrinkage, rot in several areas (possibly due to a spill from long ago, exacerbated by our climate's humidity) needed to be filled, lacquer reparation was necessary in areas where rot was apparent, and the cabinet needed a good cleaning.

All treatment work was designed to be as non-invasive as possible, which is the goal of all conservation and preservation work.

Fort Vancouver has worked with MPF Conservation twice, also resulting in the conservation of a melodeon, slope writing desk, wardrobe, fainting couch, washstand, dining chairs, drop-leaf table, and a game table, all of which were possessions of the McLoughlin family.

MPF Conservation conservator at work
An MPF Conservation conservator uses a cotton swab to clean the side of Marguerite McLoughlin's sewing cabinet

Did You Know?

An HBC beaver trap from the collection at Fort Vancouver National Historic Site

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...