"Such a library as ours would not only contain books and current periodicals,
but there would be...articles of historic, scientific, and artistic interest."
~ Frank C. Patten, Head Librarian of Rosenberg Library, 1904 - 1934
The Library accepted its first museum piece shortly after it opened in 1904. Since then, thousands of rare and interesting objects from around the world have been added to the collection. Displayed in these pages are the Library's "Treasures of the Month."
January 2008 "Treasure of the Month"
A tsuba is the protective hand guard plate of a Japanese sword. The tsuba served several functional purposes. First, it kept the blade and the hilt of the sword in balance. Second, it prevented an opponent’s blade from injuring the sword holder’s hand. Third, the tsuba helped the warrior guide his weapon back into its scabbard.
Tsubas were also means of communicating a warrior’s social status. The designs chosen often signified one’s clan, school, or belief system. Tsubas were made by skilled artisans whose sole vocation was the crafting of these sword guards. Often tsubas were lavishly ornamented and were passed down as heirlooms by one generation to the next. Sometimes a family crest was used as part of the design on a tsuba. Other motifs that appear on tsuba are animals, plants, mythological figures, or religious images.
The Treasure of the Month is located on the library’s historic second floor near the East Entrance. It can be viewed during regular library hours, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. For more information, please contact the Museum Office at 409-763-8854 x 125.