After the Caverns, we stopped by a few of the other exhibits that were available.  The Luray Valley Museum was small but I thought it was really interesting.  So many museums have replicas to add to their exhibits, but the really fascinating things are the actual items.  While this museum was small, all of their items were actually from the 1800s,  that were found around the local area.  They had found a trunk with clothes and belonging that are all now on display for the public to enjoy.  Seeing personal belongings is like seeing a bit of someone's soul.  These were the things they choose, the things they touched, and the things they cherished.  
          Looking at this box through the glass, I felt a strange connection to it.  Like this little girl and I would have been the best of friends if I lived in the 1800s.  When I was in elementary school I had a shoebox decorated in the same fashion that I only kept my special things in.  I took hours to decorate things, only putting my favorite pictures and patterns on them.  These things became an expression of me, just as art always has.  Looking through the glass I was seeing a reflection of myself in another time.
          I never knew that birth certificates were so decorated in the 1800s.  They had a whole display case of birth certificates that were highly decorative.  I wasn't expecting something that is now so plain and official, to once be so beautiful.

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