Forgotten Jacksonville Memories Found During Cowford Chophouse Restaurant Restoration


You can’t help but cheer over the progress that The Cowford Chophouse restaurant restoration has made in the past year. Now, The Cowford Chophouse and Museum of Science of History have partnered up to preserve and share many of the items they uncovered in the old Bostwick Building.

Alexandria Klempf, of the Forking Amazing Restaurant Group, said they went into the restoration project with the intention that, “Whatever we did find, we wanted people to have access to.” While a great deal of archival materials like loans and mutual trusts have been discovered, and will surely contribute to the history here in Jacksonville, it’s the personal materials tucked away in forgotten safety deposit boxes that makes our hearts beat a little faster. Because of those safety deposit boxes, The Chophouse has been lucky enough to be able to hand over a great deal of personal and sentimental objects to the museum, especially mementos and documents from the Bostwick family. From watches to charm bracelets and medals, they’ve uncovered memories hidden away for too long.

Chophouse_MOSH_CMYKThese freshly discovered items, says MOSH Curator Alyssa Porter, “Tell us about individuals in a real and personal way.” Porter shared one of her favorite pieces, a $10 bill pinned to a note from the 1950’s that reads, “Charlie’s first retainer.” Porter said that MOSH takes their role as custodian of these memories seriously, and their goal is synonymous with The Chophouse: to share this living history and provide “public access to this collection for all.”

While we’ll be eagerly awaiting the collaborative MOSH/Cowford Chophouse exhibit, with the amount of items they’ve found they don’t anticipate it being any time soon. However, with The Chophouse still on track to open this fall, we’ll be getting a bit of living Jacksonville history sooner rather than later!

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