We watched the movie The Strange Case of Benjamin Button.

The next day Uncle rooted around in the buggy barn til he unearthed an ole' tin box of buttons that he's been keepin' fer decades. (Y'all already knows Uncle is a PACK RAT!)

That ole button box wuz among the piles of thangs left behind in the barn of the first ole timey place we lived in. That first barn had a hand crank Edison Standard Phonograph an' the cylinder records that was played on it. That first barn had ole timey saws and tools an' assorted harnesses....an' this box of buttons. Ain't no tellin' how old some of these buttons is. Funniest thang is that Uncle woan throw this stuff OUT. He thinks some day he will find a million dollar button.

Thas' why he tole me, "Jump on that netway of yours an find us somethin' 'bout ole buttons. "

Can ya think of anythang any duller? So I said,

"Thas' fer ole folks. You do it."

"Belle," he coaxed, " how we gonna know iffin' thar's a treasure in heah iffin' ya doan look up prize buttons."

I figgered the fastest way to hush him up was to show him they ain't no big buck buttons. But in the back of mah mind I did think how interestin' that buttons wasn't jes' tossed, but recycled--not thrown out, but saved for re-use or even used to make somethin' else, like earrings.

Well, I'se stunned.

Y'all will not believe how many dull folks is out theah--button collectors is EVERYwhere. Do these bumps on stumps not know thar's a whole wide world beyond them button boxes?

Then I started lookin' an next thang ya know I wuz a buttonb dullard too.

Why, did ya know that a heap of fine black buttons of all sorts of wild and elegant designs wuz made by GoodYear--that is, the tire maker? Yep, hard rubber buttons was prolly on yore grandpappy's jacket. THas' AFTER Poor Goodyear went to debtor's prison an' asked his wife to bring hims some rubber abd her rollin' pin fer him to play wif.

Then I seen how collectors love uniform buttons--the policemen of NYC have they own design, and so do the firemen of San Francisco.

Of course, military buttons is it's own class of buttons. They's all the rage wif' re-enactor groups. Museums is huntin' fer particular military buttons.

Buttons is made of odd stuff--pressed hair buttons, celluloid an' Bakelite,

Czech glass buttons of a type called moonglow is popular--an' we have a couple of 'em. Wood buttons an' nut buttons,

silver buttons and marcacite wif colored glass ( we have two of em').

Ivory of course, and jade, jaspar, mother of pearl. Coin buttons, an' lovely cameo buttons. Thar's amazin' carved buttons from the Orient...

Bone buttons was popular an expensive, antlers cut cross wise made fine men buttons. Collectors loved somethin' called Calico buttons (we have some!), and Chinese stencil buttons was a rage....stylish Art Deco buttons--we found three in the box, but only as singles no sets.

I ain't made to the bottom of the box yet, but I 'se so ashamed to admit I'se spent a half a mornin' rummagin' through an o0le box of buttons --ferPete's Sake!!


Aunty Belle said...

sorry fer the pho-phos but I'se out of batteries fer mah camera.

Headed to drug store fer Granny's meds--will get batteries and post new button photos soon.

Big Shamu said...

Hmmmm, me thinks me needs to rummage around in Uncle Pack Rat's barn...

Anonymous said...

I loved this post because I love buttons. We have been recycling in my family for ever and I had to be a sweet talking thing when I managed to get my granma's away from my sister!

Boxer said...

I used to collect buttons, but I had to stop... they are EVERYWHERE. I went to a very cool fabric store in San Fran. once and there is a WALL of beautiful buttons; old and new. I was nearly dizzy when I left. I have a necklace and ring made from buttons..... can you tell? I love them.

I'm with Shamy, we need to head down south and rummage in that barn. :-)

SophieMae said...

Dawgawn, ya done reminded me of the old place my sister used to rent from a cousin in (S) Care-liney. That ol' barn out back was packed with the coolest stuff. My favourites were the jukebox and bunches of thick vinyl 78's. Funny how we recomember some things... the one song I remember from all those records is This Magic Moment... which will now be in my head all weekend.

Dani said...

Old buttons...be still my heart. :)

fishy said...

I am so glad you said there weren't any million dollar buttons. That probably saved ME from spending a morning going through boxes, cans,purses and socks full of buttons that belonged to Blowfish's
mama and now belongs to Mermaid.

Once when I was in NY,NY I visited a " traveling" gallery show of the most astonishing stained glass style windows made from translucent buttons. Those window panels were amazingly beautiful.
The subject matter was all religious, but not specifically christian. The buttons used were from all over the world and promoted the one God, one people concept. It was obviously a successful show, cause here I am remembering it 30 years later.

pamokc said...

OOoh I bet there are some treasures there! Keep us posted on what you find!

Floridacracker said...

I remember walking through the Lightner Museum in St. Aug years ago and there was a huge button collection.

I was of the 'get a life' opinion too at the time.

When it comes to collecting, there is something for everyone.

Gnomeself Be True said...

I've bought a few jars of buttons off of ebay for the spouse. She sews and just likes to have the buttons in jars laying around.
A strange thing, but inexpensive to indulge.