Sound recording and text creation: oral history and the Deliberately Concealed Garments Project

Eastop, Dinah (2007) Sound recording and text creation: oral history and the Deliberately Concealed Garments Project. In, Hayward, Maria and Kramer, Elizabeth (eds.) Textiles and Text: Re-establishing the Links Between Archival and Object-Based Research. AHRC Research Centre for Textile Conservation and Textile Studies Third Annual Conference London, UK, Archetype Press, 65-70. (Postprints of the AHRC Research Centre for Textile Conservation and Textile Studies, 3).


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Oral history accounts (sound recordings and their transcriptions) are important sources for the study of textiles and dress. This paper demonstrates the value of such accounts for the Deliberately Concealed Garments Project (DCGP), set up to document garments and other things found deliberately concealed within buildings. This paper focuses on one oral history account of the Sittingbourne Cache, the collective name for over 500 items found within an old public house in Sittingbourne, Kent, UK. The account provides information about the location of the cache sites within the building and the circumstances of the ‘excavation’ of the finds. It also provides a vivid record of the finder’s excitement at the discovery. Understanding the views and attitudes of finders was important for developing the conservation strategy of the DCGP and led to a focus on measures to raise public awareness of the practice of concealment and the evidential significance of finds and cache sites. The DCGP provides a useful model of ‘material culture’, not as a new term for artefacts, but as the interconnection of persons, artefacts and language. In the case of the DCGP the interconnections are shown to be between: the persons who hide, discover, report, curate, conserve and study caches; the artefacts that are involved in the concealments (eg buildings and garments); and, the language used to describe the practice. The oral history accounts of the DCGP provide a rich illustration of material culture as linking persons to language (in both speech and text) with textiles.

Item Type: Book Section
ISBNs: 1904982263 (paperback)
Related URLs:
Keywords: Deliberately Concealed Garments Project, Sittingbourne Cache, Wessex Film and Sound Archive, cache, material culture, oral history
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
N Fine Arts > NK Decorative arts Applied arts Decoration and ornament
Divisions : University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Art
ePrint ID: 45767
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
17 August 2007In press
Date Deposited: 17 Aug 2007
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2016 12:20

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