The Jacksonville Area Museum will be opening a new major exhibit on Saturday.
The J. Capps & Sons, Ltd. Display will present a history of Jacksonville’s first major manufacturer. A special preview of the display will be presented to museum members on Wednesday evening.
Laura Marks of the museum says the display will give a retrospective of the company’s history from 1839 until its closure in 1975. Marks says that Joseph Capps originally moved to Waverly in 1837 out of Kentucky because he didn’t want to live in a slave state. He came to Jacksonville in 1839 and opened a woolen mill, which would later develop into the massive clothing factory that was open in the region for 135 years.
Many original artifacts will exhibit men’s suits, military uniforms, and the company’s famous Indian trade blankets that were endorsed by Buffalo Bill Cody. The displays will have other items from the company’s history and stories collected from the area by former Capps employees and Capps descendants.
At its height, Capps employed 450 workers and sold their clothing in more than 800 retail stores in 40 states.
The museum’s regular schedule is Wednesdays and Saturdays from 10AM to 4PM and Sundays from 1 to 4PM. A five dollar donation is suggested for all of those who enter.