如果您想为这件文物的修复做出贡献，请点击链接到 MOCA的赞助文物修复捐赠页面，并确保输入”Chinese Hand Laundry Sign”作为文物名称。
Those who have visited MOCA Collections’ old home at 70 Mulberry may remember the old Chinatown business signs that we used to proudly display all along our walls. Many of these were salvaged in the 1980s during the earliest years of the museum but were unfortunately among the treasures we lost in the fire. This two-sided Chinese hand laundry sign is the sole laundry sign at 70 Mulberry which survives.
They have since been replaced by self-service machine laundromats, but for about a century, Chinese hand laundries proliferated across neighborhoods of the city. Barred from entering the skilled professions, hand washing clothes, along with cooking food, became one of the only jobs Chinese immigrants could do to earn a living. The materials composing this sign–white and red paint, metal sheet, hand-hammered nails and wooden frame– speak to the humbleness of these small businesses. Running mostly on Chinese’s hard labor, they often required little capital outlay to open. Most of these types of signs have been replaced by modern awnings and flashy neon signage.
Though not originally in the best of shape, the sprinkler system has caused the sign to suffer additional structural damage, most visible in the complete losses to sides of its wooden frame, but also in the detaching of fragments still there, such as the metal sheet from the wood. The wooden frame is abraded and worn in many areas, especially along the edges. It requires stabilization as it is vulnerable to further loss during handling. The wood molding is weathered and water damaged, resulting in a generally warped appearance, and there are many small cracks and splintering throughout. Many of the small nails that originally secured the metal sign within the wooden frame have been lost and the empty holes can be seen. The surface displays visible corrosion or rust, as well as surface dirt and mold staining. The red paint is flaking in many areas, revealing the oxidized iron surface below.
As the only surviving laundry sign, MOCA has determined it to be a priority for conservation and restoration. With your donation and adoption, we would first dry clean the surface and degrease metal elements, then carefully reconstruct missing pieces, reduce surface corrosion as appropriate and coat unpainted metal surfaces as needed, reduce molding, locally consolidate flaking paint, and reattach mounting hardware and loose parts so that the sign is once again structurally sound and safely displayable mounted.
那些参观过 MOCA 馆藏部以前位于茂比利街 70 号前址的人可能还记得我们曾经自豪地挂在墙上的老唐人街商业招牌。其中许多是在博物馆成立初期的 1980 年代抢救出来的，但不幸的是，它们是我们在火灾中丢失的部分宝藏。这个双面的中式洗衣店招牌是在茂比利街 70 号唯一幸存下来的洗衣店招牌。