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Looking glass (one of a pair)

Northeastern United States



21-3/4 in x 24-3/4 in x 3-1/2 in


Gilded gesso on unidentified wood, mirrored glass

Credit Line

Historic Odessa Foundation, gift of Sally Reese Pryor

Accession Number



Molded decorations on the frame incorporate the words "HONOR TO THE BRAVE" (top), "UNION" (sides), and “LIBERTY” (bottom).


The pair of looking glasses descended to the donor in 1989 from her mother, Harriet C. Reese, and her father, Charles Lee Reese Jr.


The pair of horizontally oriented rectangular looking glasses exhibits clear visual references to the Civil War and its remembrance.  Molded appliqués on the frame ask the viewer to "honor" the "brave," namely those who fought in the Civil War; it champions "liberty"--an end to slavery--and "union," the survival of the nation.  The back boards and back of the frame have pieces of the October 12, 1861, edition of the Springfield [Massachusetts] Weekly Republican pasted onto them.  The newspaper is symbolic and not an indicator of where and when the looking glasses were made.