LAYTON — Your old clothes may have more historical value than you realize.
The Heritage Museum of Layton is currently on the lookout for old clothing in good condition, particularly from the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s. The museum is also interested in other memorabilia from these eras, in preparation for a planned permanent exhibit about clothing through the ages.
“We’re planning to cover as many decades as we can,” said Bill Sanders, director of the museum. “We looked in our archives, and we’re kind of shy on the 1950s through the 1990s.”
The museum is particularly interested in clothing and other memorabilia that can be definitively dated to a specific era, such as poodle skirts and bell-bottom pants. The important thing is that the clothing was made in the specific era, rather than a later attempt to bring back the fashion, so that the museum can show how people lived in a specific time period.
“We’re at the point when people are throwing away clothes and other related items from these eras,” he said. “If we don’t preserve them now, the museums of the future won’t have them.”
Though the people who lived during those eras may not feel that the related items are museum-worthy, Sanders said that your children and grandchildren are or will be just as fascinated by that time as adults are by the eras they weren’t around to remember personally.
“For kids today, the 1950s are as far away as the 1850s,” he said.
The donations would be added to the items already in the museum’s collection, which means that the need for clothes and memorabilia from certain eras is less of a priority. Still, everyone is welcome to call and see if the museum would be interested in their items.
“We do have some things from the 1930s and 40s,” he said. “We pretty much have WWII covered.”
The museum is also interested in any old high school memorabilia from Davis County or South Ogden schools, particularly in the eras listed above. Though some of the items may not be included in the clothing exhibit, they’re part of the local history the museum is trying to preserve for the whole area.
“We’re interested in things from the high schools in Bountiful to the South Weber area,” he said.
The Heritage Museum of Layton was founded in 1972 by a group of Layton citizens, and was first open to the public in the 1980s. Though the museum’s initial focus was only the history of Layton City, it has since expanded to include several aspects of northern Utah history.
Donations to the museum are tax-deductible, and the museum will provide a deed of gift to donors who bring in their items. Additionally, Sanders also said that the museum will accept donated items through the mail.
“If these things are out there, we’d really appreciate it if people send them to us rather than the dump,” he said.
The museum is located at 403 Wasatch Drive in Layton. For more information, or to determine whether the museum would be interested in items you may have, call 801-336-3930.