Album

6 x 8 inches, 118pp. Unique altered book.

This original autograph album with the owner’s name, “Alma Blydenburge”, stamped in gold on the front within a decorative gilt rule, was rebound using the original covers with a black cloth spine and new sewing.
The book is housed in a black cloth over boards box made by Mary McCarthy. Opening in front with recesses for white kid gloves, an embroidered linen handkerchief and a cross-stitched pink ribbon book mark, the front panels close with a black ribbon tie secured with pewter rondel.

The artist’s statement reveals that Alma Blydenburge was born in 1811 in Smithtown, Suffolk, New York. She was 21 when she began keeping the album in 1832. At about the same time she married Richard Smith. She died in 1883 at age 52. There are five pages with original watercolors of flowers or plants and one calligraphic page. On most pages the elegant, feminine penmanship found in the album have illustrations of Charles Dana Gibson’s characterizations of the American feminine ideal transferred onto the original album pages with alcohol gel.

Priscilla Juvelis descrbes it as “A charming look at a past that seems light years away from today.”