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Dirty Blue Shirts to Bring Federal-Style Fashion to Pardee-Morris House


New Haven, Conn. (June 21, 2024) – Love Regency-era romance? Whether Jane Austen sets your heart aflame, or you prefer the high drama of “Bridgerton,” you’ll want to join the New Haven Museum and the “living historians” from Dirty Blue Shirts at the Pardee-Morris House (PMH) for a “show-and-feel” presentation of the Federal Period clothing worn during the early 1800s! We’ll explore how Connecticans stayed on top of European trends, and how they made their own sartorial marks on the international scene during “Lately Arrived in New London: Fashioning Federal Style" at PMH on Sunday, July 28, 2024, at 2 p.m. Register for this free NH250 event here. For weather updates check FB/IG or call 203-562-4183.


According to Rebecca Bayreuther Donohue of the Dirty Blue Shirts, while Europe’s drawing-rooms dressed in Regency style, early Americans were developing their own Federal flair. From the balmy ports of South Carolina to the snowy harbors of New England, ships offloaded fabrics and fashion papers to a waiting audience of savvy consumers. At home, textile production was growing apace, providing everyday fabrics as well as employment for countless citizens.


“In current times, when ‘fast fashion’ reigns supreme, understanding the clothing of the past and their historical context helps ground us and puts modern fashion conventions into better perspective,” Donohue says. “We hope attendees will have a greater understanding of the fashions popular during the early 19th century when the Morris family lived on the PMH property. We will put the lives of the family and all those within their household into historical context through the clothing of their time.”

Dirty Blue Shirts began their journey with historic costuming with the hoops and bustles of the mid-late 19th century. With growing public interest in the Regency Period, thanks to shows such as “Bridgerton” and “Sanditon,” the group’s members found themselves drawn to New England fashion of the same era: the American Federal Period.



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