Antique baby dress - from the estate of Denver Williams 1817-92

This delicate little baby dress came from the estate of General Denver Williams out of Wilmington, Ohio. Denver Williams (1817 – 92) was a brigadier General, a state senator and a territorial governor (to name a few) and after he brought order to the newly discovered Gold mines of Colorado they named the city of Denver after him. I think the thing that fascinates me most about this dress is the fact it was never worn. How do I know this? For one thing, the embroidered hems were hastily trimmed (common after a dress was finished with a hand scalloped edge, but it would have then been washed and trimmed again before it was ever worn) and there was never a button or loop added to close it in the back. It would be interesting to search deeper into the history of Denver Williams to see if they possibly had a baby die. If they did, I would bet money this dress was meant for that baby but packed away unworn.

The dress is made of a fine linen batiste and all the hand detailing done with silk threads. It is A-line in style with full length sleeves. I have added a tiny button and loop in the back and meticulously re-trimmed all the edges to finish it as it should have been. It measures 24” under the arms and is 24.5” long from center neck front to hem. The sleeves are 7” long and the skirt has a circumference of 44”. The condition is perfect.

It was carefully hand cleaned, air dried and pressed. I did not starch it. It has taken on a slight olive patina ~ a color which takes decades to occur and highly sought after by serious linen collectors. It has no stains, no holes or weak spots and is sound enough to actually be worn for a picture.

Whether you choose to display it as a historical piece or put it on baby for a trip to the photographer, it will no doubt fascinate all who see it.

I thank you for looking and, as always, if you have any questions or need additional pictures, just ask! I’ll be more than happy to oblige.
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