A wonderful group of pieces from the Alma E Keith estate are now available at Victoriana. These pieces are all incredible, and a true testament to Alma's taste. She was on the cover of the San Francisco magazine Town Talk on January 23, 1899.
She was a successful young business woman, who, by the time she was in her mid-20's ran her own millenary shop, making bonnets and hats for the elite and the artistic in San Francisco. She was also known for her temperamental disposition and an being arrested while in a state of confusion, carrying $2000 of her jewels in her purse, unaware of where she was, talking to her self, after an earthquake tremor in the bay area on August 5th, 1903.
Her husband, Joe gave her a lot of these pieces, and she appears to have been a fan of the utilitarian type of jewelry, such as lorgnettes and chatelaines and note pads, all in gold, probably aiding her at the shop while taking notes on what tasks needed to be done for commissions of all sorts and orders to be made.
Although Alma passed away in the 1940's, it is wonderful to be able to peak back into the lives of those people that, most likely, nobody alive knew. She may have been just like your favorite, crazy Aunt, or a friend that just loves gold and feathers. It is important to preserve these treasures for the generations who have no idea what a chatelaine may even be, and to give insight into the lives of such strong business women who defined the suffrage movement, a right to vote and a place in society.
Check out some of Alma's pieces for sale in our New to the shop page.