From silks to suffragettes, the history of Courtaulds, an exhibition in Braintree

PUBLISHED: 14:04 10 January 2020 | UPDATED: 14:04 10 January 2020

Courtaulds from 1816 to 1982 is at Braintree Museum

Courtaulds from 1816 to 1982 is at Braintree Museum

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Braintree was the birthplace of Courtaulds. This is the story of the development

of artificial silk and the influence of a family whose members became war heroes, local politicians and suffragettes.

An exhibition on the history of the silk manufacturer, Courtaulds, which became one of the world's textile giants, is being held at Braintree Museum from February 1 to May 30.

Braintree was the birthplace of Courtaulds. This is the story of the development of artificial silk and the influence of a family whose members became war heroes, politicians and suffragettes.

Samuel Courtauld opened his first mill in Bocking in 1816 and with his brother, George created black mourning crepe. Wearing black crepe was

made fashionable by Queen Victoria after the death of Prince Albert.

The company expanded, with mills in Braintree and Halstead.

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Original objects on display at the exhibition will include the artist Gauguin's first woodblock prints and a suffragette poster designed by Catherine Courtauld,

Samuel Courtauld IV, Chairman of Courtauld Textiles from 1921 to 1946 was one of the keenest collectors of impressionist art of the

20th century.

He founded the Courtauld Institute of Art in 1932, one of the greatest collections of works by Monet, Cezanne, Van Gogh and Gaugin.

There will also be stories recorded by past Courtauld Company employees and family members. There will be talks, walks and The Braintree Textile Fair will be adding on an additional day with a Courtauld focus.

The exhibition is being supported by the Courtauld Institute of Art, the Courtauld Family, the Scott Polar Research Institute and Women's Library in London. Courtaulds 1816-1982, February 1 to May 30. Tuesday to Saturday, 10am to 4pm. Free with entry to the museum.


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