1845 Day Dress

Date: ca. 1860 - Material: Printed Wool - Accession: 2001.191.1.002

American religious revivals peaking in the 1830s, along with the crowning of conservative Queen Victoria, brought new focus on modesty and decency in dress to gain public respect. This printed wool dress reflects these new, exceedingly modest lines emerging by the 1840s. The jewel neckline extends to the base of the neck. The coat sleeves are tight and set in a dropped armscye (sleeve holes at shoulder) with an oversleeve or epaulette. The waist is at its natural line. The bodice is boned to support a waist that would be corseted to a small circumference and is further accented with a pleated fan. The unadorned skirt is bell shaped and supported by several petticoats. The waist and armscye have same-fabric piping.

Donated to the University of Illinois Bevier Historic Costume Collection by Mrs. Leslie Bryan. Property transfer to the Illinois State Museum, 2001.