MOBILE, ALABAMA –HISTORY MUSEUM OF MOBILE is excited to announce the next major exhibition, Dressing the Abbey, opening January 2023. Dressing the Abbey weaves fashion, history, and popular culture into an exhibition featuring costumes from Downton Abbey™, one of the most widely watched television dramas in the world.

The exhibition features thirty-five costumes worn by men and women, inviting viewers to discover the turbulence of the Edwardian era and the cultural impact of the First World War. From rich country tweeds, to sumptuous evening gowns, to a starched footman’s livery, the textiles in this exhibition speak to a transformational moment in art, fashion, design, and history.


“The exhibition approaches textile design as a means of analyzing how art reflects changing societal and cultural traditions,” said Meg McCrummen Fowler, director of the History Museum of Mobile. “Visitors will see how textile design both reflected and produced changing ideas about society, culture, manners, and history at the transformative period in the history of the Western world.”


The exhibition will be on view at History Museum of Mobile from January 28 to April 22, 2023.


From the History Museum of Mobile’s own collection of over 117,000 objects, the Museum is curating a complementary exhibition, Dressing Mobile: 1920s Fashion in the Port City. It will run simultaneously and will feature the transformation of Mobile society and culture from 1890 to 1930. The Museum will also open Setting the Table, a hands-on exhibition featuring formal table settings, menus, tea customs, and more.


A series of programs will enrich the visitor experience and enhance the educational value of the exhibition. From engaging local artists and designers in lectures, to exploring the performative rituals around drinking tea, to designing creative tablescapes for one’s own home, to teaching ballroom dancing, the planned programming is designed to allow for meaningful connections to both the exhibition themes and to the local community.


The award-winning costumes featured in Dressing the Abbey were produced by the London costume house of Cosprop Ltd.

History Museum of Mobile is open Monday – Saturday from 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM and Sunday from 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM.


The exhibition is developed and distributed by Exhibits Development Group in. cooperation with Cosprop Ltd., London, England. The exhibition is not endorsed by, sponsored by, licensed by, associated with, or otherwise affiliated with the television series Downton Abbey™, NBC Universal International, Carnival Film and Television Limited or their representatives.


About the History Museum of Mobile:


The History Museum of Mobile is where Mobile’s story begins. Over 117,000 objects weave together the rich histories of Mobile and the surrounding area, from the prehistoric past to the present. Located in the heart of downtown, the History Museum of Mobile operates three campuses: The primary exhibitions are located in the Old City Hall-Southern Market building at 111 South Royal Street; Colonial Fort Condé is at 150 South Royal Street; and the Phoenix Fire Museum is at 203 South Claiborne Street.


In 2020, the History Museum of Mobile announced a partnership with the Alabama Historical Commission, the Mobile County Commission, and the City of Mobile to build, curate, and operate Clotilda: The Exhibition in the under-construction Heritage House in historic Africatown. The exhibition will tell the story of the Clotilda and of the remarkable men, women, and children who established the community of Africatown.


About Exhibits Development Group (EDG):

The Exhibitionists are dedicated to the development, production, marketing, and distribution of traveling museum exhibitions and cultural projects. EDG serves as a partner to museums, foundations, collection owners and other exhibition organizers, in the U.S. and abroad in the care and stewardship of their exhibitions and collections. EDG’s mission is to initiate and promote international cultural and intellectual exchange by bringing high-quality traveling exhibitions of art, science, and history to broad and diverse audiences.

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Media Contact:

Melissa Harville, Marketing & Events Manager

History Museum of Mobile

251-301-0723 | melissa.harville@historymuseumofmobile.com