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One’s Past Was Once One’s Present

Kelly Vo
On March 29, 2022

When you first step into the China Shop, a building offered at the Harold Warp Pioneer Village, you will find yourself surrounded by endless amounts of captivating treasures. In a way, you will feel as if you have been transported to another point in time. As stated on the Pioneer Village website, the building was, “Originally a rural school house, that now houses fascinating collections of china, pottery, cut glass and precious keepsakes carried west in covered wagons.” This historic building, that was once a schoolhouse, has now been repurposed into an antique shop- just like how antiques are being repurposed by prospective collectors. There is so much history that sits among these shelves, each piece holds its own story. You can’t help but reminisce on the history that brought America to where it is today. 

On display is a personal item from one of America’s most beloved past presidents, Abraham Lincoln. This treasure is a sugar bowl that is glazed with pictures of his mother, Nancy Hanks Lincoln, and his grandmother, Lucy Hanks. It’s surreal to think about the history of this piece. Pioneer Village has been able to survive and preserve these ancient ceramics for many centuries. There’s a higher appreciation for these timeless works of art, and these museum pieces hold a great deal of sentimental value.

Diving into history, we can see these personal items that were used by our very own ancestors. Today, we still use these same items, and we can see how much has changed throughout the years. The China Shop houses an array of fascinating antiques that you can’t find anywhere else. Items used nowadays are taking on a more minimalistic form compared to the intricate relics. There’s simply something so intriguing with regards to old times. What attracts us to these old things? They are past their prime, left behind by their original owners. A few, totally outdated, and reinvented with sleeker choices or innovation. But then, there’s a sure appeal to the bygone era methods of living. No matter what generation you grew up in, there’s always something that draws people to these antiques.

Fine China has existed since the 8th century, originating from the Tang Dynasty. Despite losing its popularity over time, it possesses very delicate and attractive detail that is still valued. These pieces were once highly esteemed and commonly used items, they are now considered heirlooms that we can view for many years to come. Antiques are fascinating. They have so much charm and characteristic. Now, more and more people from the younger generations are learning to appreciate the culture and advancement in technology behind these priceless artifacts.

You can visit these #HiddenTreasures and #PricelessPieces at the Harold Warp Pioneer Village, located in Minden, Nebraska. You can explore #Historybeforeyoureyes and about how people used to live. By visiting, not only will you have the opportunity to enrich yourself, but you can also see the past that once was someone’s present. And while you’re here, visit the endless amount of #NEverbefore seen #MuesumMoments.

Kelly Vo
A Student at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, as part of Heather Nelson’s Service Learning Academy class.

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