A charming memento of the great Australian singer, being a late 19th-century velvet case for carrying music. The case itself is of cardboard, with gold foil appliqués, or the remains of them, consisting of a portrait of Melba under the handle (surrounded by leaves), two bands near each end and decorative rounds on either end.
This was the property of the Deansboro Music Museum in Deansboro, New York (auctioned in a fund-raiser in 1966). According to them (their provenance is included), the case was originally presented to Dame Nellie Melba by Queen Victoria in the 1870's. Unfortunately, we have no proof of that; it is possible that it was made as a commercial souvenir commemorating the great diva who was immensely popular in England and indeed, was greatly admired by Queen Victoria.ODA-11285$350