Foundling Fabrics

A flowered silver ribbon with a paper sewn to it which reads, "This silver Ribbon is desired to be preserved as the Childs mark for distinction." It is part of an exhibit organized by the Foundling Museum and curated by John Styles. When poverty or social mores forced a woman to abandon her infant at London's Foundling Hospital during the mid-18th century, a piece of fabric left with the child signaled the mother's intention to reclaim her baby. Among the thousands who left that token fabric, few were able to return for their child. Those simple but poignant swatches will be exhibited starting Saturday, May 25, 2013 at Colonial Williamsburg.

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