An update on mother-of-pearl buttons from “Health, Husbandry and Handicraft”, 1861.
This rather wordy book gives good descriptions of how the buttons we collect were made.
This story changed with the development of the freshwater shell industry in America, along with the passing of high tariffs there for imported goods in 1890. No longer would America import “incredible quantities” of MOP buttons from England. Also, the opening up of Australian MOP harvesting had not yet had an impact in Britain, although it soon would.
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