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I’ll tell you what I have, a cousin of mine was a great preserver. When we were married, she saved the glass that was broken, the rice that was thrown, a corsage that was thrown. I have a whole book of all this kind of memorabilia from my wedding. I handle it with care … all the telegrams I got, the caterer’s bill, everything.

Rose Pines, who married Moses J. Cohen at the Alcazar Blue Room, Baltimore, in 1937. Interviewed by Marcie Cohen-Ferris, “Weaving Women’s Words: Baltimore” Oral History Project of the Jewish Women’s Archives, 2001. JMM OH630

Leah Church married Jeremy Sera in an outdoor ceremony at the Inn at Brookeville Farms, Olney, on June 26, 2005.


She wore her mother’s 1972 wedding gown, saying later, “I chose the dress because I grew up looking at pictures of it, and there was never any question in my mind of wearing anything else at my own wedding.” (And yes, their dogs Keats and Bradley were part of the wedding party.)


Courtesy of Leah Sera. JMM CP 2017.26.4

CP 2017.26.4.jpg


It is human nature to place importance on the physical, material trappings of our lives. These objects and papers carry meaning for the owner and, often, for succeeding generations as well.  (That’s why museums exist.)


Our rituals and milestones are attended by stuff, and once these things are no longer needed, we often try to preserve our choices and our memories by literally preserving these physical reminders: displaying them proudly, packing them away for the future, or letting them add meaning of other events.

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