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The fabric of history:

The family who donated this piece tell the story that the piece of material used for the dress came from a soldier family member who took part in the Jacobite risings of 1745. While retreating from Derby, the soldier started to fear that he may be killed in battle. He took a piece of his Highland outfit, had it blessed, and handed it to a courier, who was given instructions to deliver it to the family.

“The soldier told the courier that if all future children of the family were swathed in this material, it would keep them safe and bring them long and successful lives.”

It is not known exactly when the decision was made to make the material into a dress, but it is recorded that a young male member of the family was the first to wear it.