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Benares House Gallery
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Calling Card Case : Felt
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Title: Calling Card Case
Identifier: 979.6.1077
Donor: Geoffrey Sayers
Item Date: 1870-1900
Creation Date: 2011
Location: Benares Historic House

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Description: A red birch bark calling card case with detachable lid. The case is decorated in a floral pattern using porcupine quills and felt.

Calling cards were business sized cards bearing the name of a person that is presented when making a house call. They were an essential accessory to all 19th Century middle and upper class men and women. Calling cards were an indication of breeding and many guidelines were in place for their style and use. They also required cases to carry them which came in various styles and designs.The calling card ritual began originally as morning calls. These visits usually happened in the afternoon and were important for meeting a well connected family, offering condolences, or for maintaining a friendship. The calling card played an important role in these visits and was the responsibility of women. A card would be left for all members of the family and could also be left on a husband's behalf. A visit with the mistress of the house could be requested although the visitor would only be expected to stay for 20 minutes and would not remove his or her outerwear.
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Related Links:
   Museums of Mississauga Home Page
   Canadian Heritage Information Network (CHIN)
   Virtual Museum of Canada