(Clarinda) – The Nodaway Valley Historical Museum is gearing up for a fundraiser focused on the history of marriage.
Next month, on July 9, the museum is hosting its “Brides Remembered” Vintage Wedding Dress Luncheon. Historic wedding dresses and even tuxedos will be on display for visitors to admire. During the KMA’s “Morning Show,” museum curator Trish Bergren says the exhibit highlights the stories of many local couples.
“These dresses extend from 1853,” Bergren said. “We have more current ones, but we’re going to stop it around 1965. So those will be on display, the stories of the brides – just wonderful trips down memory lane.”
The luncheon is the second showing that the Nodaway Valley Historical Museum has made of its wedding collection. The wide array of styles and colors catches the eye of all who attend. Bergren says it’s not only captivating to learn about the local history of these newlyweds, but also how larger historical moments played out in their lives.
“You look at WWII in particular, these girls didn’t know if their boys were coming home,” Bergren said. “And often there was no planning, and moms, grandmothers and aunts would come together to get whatever they needed to be sure that these two kids could be together before he left. “
With so many unique stories, the museum’s wedding collection has become one of their most popular exhibits. Bergren says it’s always great to see the huge amount of fundraising interest they get, because it goes a long way in keeping this and other parts of the story alive for generations.
“It’s all going to the archive project,” Bergren said. “It’s not just our wedding dresses – the preservation archive is our military uniforms, it’s our baby collection, our wedding dresses, our proms. It takes time, and as most people know, The Nodaway Valley Historical Museum was built entirely on volunteers until me, so we’re doing the best we can with what we have.”
Bergren mentions that anyone who wishes can also donate directly to the museum to support its conservation efforts.
“Brides Remembered” on July 9 will be held at Wilbholm Hall Page County Fair Grounds. Doors open at 11 a.m. for viewing, followed by a lunch at noon that includes a wedding cake and concludes with a presentation from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. Tickets are $30 each and can be purchased at the Clarinda Chamber of Commerce or Nodaway. Historical Museum of the Valley. You can also call 712-542-3073 for more information. You can hear Trish Bergren’s full interview below.