Loom Project Progress Report
Exhibit’s Centerpiece: Jacquard Looms from the Scalamandré Mills
by Susan Barlow

reprinted from the September, 2007 edition of the Courier newsletter

Exciting meetings have kept Loom Committee members busy with plans and research for the loom exhibit at the History Center (lower level of former Cheney Machine Shop). The exhibit will include photographs, hands-on displays, as well as the Jacquard and other looms. The goal of the project is to exhibit looms and related artifacts in a learning environment that illustrates the significance of textile mills in New England’s history, from cottage industry to Industrial Revolution to today, as well as the importance of the Cheney silk mills nationally and internationally.

Since our last report in the Courier, here are some further developments:

• Paula and Tony Viscogliosi, who were generous and instrumental in securing the looms, continue to work on the project, through plans for fundraising events, design, and web development.

• John Carter heads the committee working on the exhibit and preparation of the building to welcome visitors. He’s in the process of creating a time-line with tasks and costs.

• Society President John Dormer reports near completion of the roof project, including skylights in the loom exhibit area. (See related story.)

• Others are working on research and cataloguing of our current collection. In our modern, fast-paced world, visitors to museums want excitement with their education, and the loom volunteers are working toward that end.

• We welcomed visitors during Manchester’s Heritage Day in June.

• A fundraiser and preview of the exhibit will be held in May 2008 to celebrate our progress.

Want to get involved? Donations are always welcome at the Historical Society—your volunteer time and talent, too! Please phone 860-647-9983 to volunteer.