Historical Museum exhibit highlights artifacts honoring Queen Victoria

The Michigan Historical Museum has a new special exhibit featuring items Michiganians collected that honored Great Britain's Queen Victoria. Located in the atrium of the second floor, the exhibit includes a souvenir of Victoria's baby slipper, a piece of the first trans-Atlantic telegraph cable, china and a British Civil War era bayonet. The exhibit runs through May 23.

Just five months after Michigan became a state in 1837, Alexandrina Victoria became queen of Great Britain. She reigned until 1901. When Victoria came to the throne in 1837, many Americans still remembered British attacks during the War of 1812, and the British were considered to be a threat.

''As late as 1847, many Michigan residents wanted to move the state capitol from Detroit to a location farther away from British Canada,'' said Michigan Historical Museum curator Eric Perkins. ''Over the course of the late-nineteenth century, America's fascination with Victoria helped to improve U.S. relations with Britain, and since then the two countries have forged a lasting alliance.''

The Michigan Historical Center is part of the Department of Natural Resources and Environment. The museum is open seven days a week. It is located inside the Michigan Library and Historical Center, 702 West Kalamazoo St., Lansing. The museum and visitor parking are on the north side of Kalamazoo Street, two blocks east of M. L. King Jr. Boulevard. Admission is free. Weekend parking is free. For more information, visit www.michigan.gov/museum or call 517-373-3359.

The Department of Natural Resources and Environment is committed to the conservation, protection, management, and accessible use and enjoyment of the state's environment, natural resources, and related economic interests for current and future generations. Learn more at www.michigan.gov/dnre.

Copyright © 2011 State of Michigan

Published: Thu, Mar 17, 2011

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