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Fenyes-Curtin-Paloheimo Collections                                       

These collections reflect the history of these families and their relationship to Pasadena.  The Fenyes-Curtin-Paloheimo Papers are comprised of the paper collection housed in and accessed through the Research Library and Archives. (View the Fenyes-Curtin-Paloheimo index)  The Fenyes Collection is comprised of the contents of the Fenyes Mansion, both on display and in storage.  It includes books, textiles, household objects, decorative arts, and fine arts.  It is made available through docent-led tours, by appointment, or in special exhibits. 

This project was made possible by a grant from the Paloheimo Foundation.









More than 3,800 watercolors and sketches painted by Eva Scott Fenyes document her life and travels from 1866 to 1929.  These are preserved in the Fenyes-Curtin-Paloheimo Papers at Pasadena Museum of History.  All of these images are digitized and available for viewing in the Research Library and Archives.  The Braun Research Library of the Autry National Center also houses more than 300 watercolors by Eva Fenyes of California adobes and missions.  The Autry's online exhibition Capturing California’s Romantic Past: The Watercolor Works of Eva Scott Fenyes presents a biography of Eva Fenyes along with fifty-six images of her paintings from their collection.  The entire Braun Research Library Collection of works by Eva Scott Fenyes can also be viewed online.


Costume and Textile Collection                                                

This collection contains about 3,000 pieces of clothing or textiles dating from 1880 to 1970, with the majority of the collection dating from 1880 to 1920. The collection is stored archival boxes in a climate-controlled room.  Most of the items have a Pasadena or San Gabriel Valley provenance. The costume collection is strong in the area of women’s formal wear, but there are also examples of shoes, hats, handbags, parasols, fur pieces, uniforms, bathing suits, coats, shawls, gloves, handkerchiefs, underwear, stockings and jewelry for women, men and children. There are separate collections of antique buttons, political and civic badges and ribbons, and quilts. Some noteworthy items in the collection include a Charles Frederick Worth gown, circa 1880; several Rose Queen gowns from the Tournament of Roses; a Red Cross nurse’s uniform and an aviator’s uniform from World War I; and a boy’s Little Lord Fauntleroy suit, circa 1880.

There are approximately three dozen quilts, including several late nineteenth century crazy quilts.

This collection is available to the public by appointment only or when on display.


Object Collection                                                                           

This collection reflects the various eras in Pasadena’s history through utilitarian, decorative and fine art materials.   Holdings include silver used in the dining rooms of Pasadena’s resort hotels; Winfield pottery; paintings and watercolors, especially portraiture and plein air paintings; sports memorabilia; early technology and other business artifacts.

The objects in the Museum storage are used in special exhibits and are available to the public by appointment only. 










470 West Walnut Street ~ Pasadena, CA 91103 ~ Ph 626.577.1660 ~ Fax 626.577.1662 ~