Ancient Roman Drawer Pull

A bit of bronze, turning green. It looks like a knob.

This is a bronze drawer pull was made for a wealthy Roman household. Once-elegant, this knob once adorned a cabinet or dresser in a home of of one of the Roman elite. Dated from 100 – 200 AD, this artifact was found in the ruins of the ancient city of Antium, a port known for being the home of many wealthy Romans, and as the birthplace of the Emperor Nero.

Antium is known today as Anzio, and even today, the remains of Roman villas can be seen. It is located about 30 miles south of Rome.

The Glass of Water Elvis Drank

A glass half-filled with water

This partially filled glass of water, was left on the nightstand half-full of water in the Hilton Hawaiian Village where “The King” stayed while he was filming Blue Hawaii. This glass has miraculously stayed filled at the same level since that stay in the hotel in 1961.

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Emily Gilmore’s Smithsonian Spoon

A souvenir spoon from the Smithsonian Institute

One of the most famous collectors of souvenir spoons is Emily Gilmore. A resident of Connecticut, Mrs. Gilmore has collected spoons for nearly 45 years.

This specimen was donated to the SHUSH Museum when she inherited a collection from her husband’s aunt Cecile, and found that there were a number of duplicate spoons in the combined collection.

Ben Franklin’s Macaroni Art

A picture of a boat with a man in a tri-corn hat made of pasta glued with candle wax
Ben Franklin was taken by the sea and by boats at a young age and envisioned a life on the sea. In anticipation of this, he became a deft swimmer and thought about boats.

This love of aquatics is seen in this curious exhibit, a strange collage of pasta shaped into a simple sailing vessel on the sea. The pasta is affixed to the craft paper with melted candles and it is this that earns familial ire, and is noted in an admonitory report from his public grammar school teacher.

While the report has long ago been lost, a description of its content was found in the journal of Ben’s father, Josiah, who was a tallow chandler. According to this source, the note chastised the lad for his use of the expensive candles to adhere the material. His teacher was certain that the use of the more expensive items was a sign that young Benjamin lacked appropriate judgement and was given to frivolous waste of expensive materials. She suspected that the materials were taken without permission, and indicated the lad was destined for a life of sloth and criminal behavior.

There are some who note that the feather in the tri-corn hat is also made of macaroni.

Johnny Appleseed’s Appleseeds

A cloth bag spilling over with apple seeds

John Chapman, (September 26, 1774 – March 18, 1845) commonly known as Johnny Appleseed, traveled through the country planting trees.  He was known for his generosity and peculiar way of dressing.

Chapman never married, and when he died he left over 1000 acres of trees. The seeds of his preferred apple, a varietal which came to be known as “The Johnny Appleseed,” produces an apple that is especially good for baking and for applesauce.

Davy Crockett’s Pet Rock

The “King of the Wild Frontier”  grew up in Tennessee, where he became known as a hunter and a teller of stories. As a  member of the militia, he gained a reputation as a frontiersman and fighter.

He served in the Tennessee state government, and eventually represented the state in the U.S. House of Representatives. He was known for  opposing President Jackson’s policies, particularly in regard to the Native Americans, and this led to his defeat in the 1831 elections. When he failed to be re-elected in 1835, he made the decision to go to Texas, which was at that time still part of Mexico. When he left his home where, as the song says, “he knew every tree,” he picked up a rock, and took it with him to remind him of his family and the land he knew so well.

Not long after he arrived,in Texas, he became involved in the revolution, and he died in march, 1836, defending the Alamo. His son bequeathed this token from his final effects to the SHUSH Museum.

Extinct Lichen Specimen

Extinct Lichen Species in Collage

This specimen is the only remaining evidence of a now extinct lichen native to Lithuania, Arctoparmelia Centrifuga. Included in the montage is a leaf of the tree where the lichen had found its home.

Numerous attempts to use the specimen to reintroduce the lichen to its home have failed, and this one remnant of the the species remains in the SHUSH collection, until science can find a way to bring it back.

Maggie Simpson’s Pacifier

Maggie SImpson's Pacifier

Since 1989, we have invited the Simpson’s family into our homes. This iconic possession of the youngest member of the family, is one of the most unique items in the SHUSH collection.

Over the years, Maggie has gone through nearly 500 of these comfort objects, indicating that her 28 year old oral fixation might indicate significant mental health issues, and have long-term physical side effects.

Maggie is sometimes called “The Forgotten Simpson,” as she is a toddler of few words. She has a bond with Moe, the bartender and owner of Moe’s, and has a nemesis in the form of Gerald Samson, the single-browed toddler who shares her birthday.

Mysterious Sculpture

Abstract sculpture of a human-like figure

This sculpture was found during an archeological dig in a the ruins of a Roman village, dated from the first century. The mystery of this unusual statue is that it is not congruent with Roman iconography, techniques or materials. The figure has an abstract human shape, with arms wrapping around the base and stretching to the face, with crude lines inscribed to roughly indicate fingers, of which there are only four. on each hand. Similar lines mark out the features of a basic face.

The fingers are oddly elongated and resemble flippers as much as they resemble hands. The head’s unusual shape combined with the flapper-like hands and fingers, have caused some to speculate that the work is evidence of extraterrestrial visitors.

Some speculate that the sculpture itself is created by these visitors, an example of their own art. Others surmise that the item was created by a citizen of the village, who was given materials to create a portrait of these unusual visitors.

Giant Tree Family Album, pt 2 of 2

Hyperion "World's Tallest Tree" as a sprout

















The redwood tree known as Hyperion is “The World’s Tallest Tree.” In this family portrait, this mighty tree is just a sprout in Redwood National Park.  Like its famous cousin, “General Sherman,” Hyperion would take dozens of decades to become the tallest tree in the world.  This tree measures 379.3 ft (115.61 m) in height. At some point in its development, the mighty tree is said to have met its nemesis, a woodpecker, which damaged the tree near its top, and may have stunted the tree’s growth.

Buy a copy of this postcard here, in the SHUSH Museum gift shop!