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suitableplatypus asked: Hi! I'm an undergraduate student interning at the James Madison Museum in Orange, Va. I'm researching their historic clothing collection, and right now I'm resource gathering. The Met is amazing, obviously, but I was hoping you could suggest some other sites as well. In particular, I'm wondering where you find your images from Godey's. Thanks!
Hi there! It’s so exciting to talk to another student who’s on the route I’m planning on taking. What year are you?
In terms of museums, the Victoria & Albert is extraordinary - they may not have the largest online archive, but what they do have is exemplary. I am also fond of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the MFA Boston, Musée McCord, and the LACMA. Of course there are plenty of other online museums: the Kyoto Costume Institute, FIDM Museum, Manchester City Galleries.. but the ones I mentioned have been most useful to me.
For fashion plates, the New York Public Library archive is absolutely indispensable. Want to see Englishwoman’s Domestic? Look in Clothing - England. Want to see Godey’s? Look in Clothing - United States. The archive goes by subject - country - date. Of course, you have to keep in mind the dates that these publications were in circulation - obviously you won’t find any before or after they were publishing in their respective countries.