The permanent exhibition on display in Trenton is recognized at the World's Largest Collection of Porcelain Veilleuse-Theieres. The teapots on display are dated from 1750 to 1860.
In 1955, Dr. Freed began donated 525 teapots to the City of Trenton. The collection was given over a period of years. The teapots were initially on display in the lobby of the Peabody High School Auditorium. However, when a new Municipal Building was constructed, Dr. Freed has a special display case built to permanently house the treasures in the city council chambers. Now over 3,000 visitors annually come to the area to view the collection.
In the United States, only two other collections of note are known, the one of Frances Parkinson Keyes and one of Harold Newman. In Europe, there are a number of worthy collections in France, Switzerland, and Italy.
Admission is free and the exhibit is open 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Please call ahead for large groups.
Trenton City Hall
309 College Street
Trenton, TN 38382
Dr Frederick C. Freed
Dr. Frederick C. Freed was born in Trenton, Tennessee on November 7, 1889, the son of Julius and Henrietta Freed. He was educated in the Trenton schools before going to Nashville for his pre-med education. In 1913, he received his Doctorate in Medicine form Jefferson College in Philadelphia and from there, moved to New York to work at Bellevue Hospital as a resident in obstetrics and gynecology. Dr. Freed maintained a private medical practice in New York City for 40 years and also was a clinical professor at New York University's School of Obstetrics and Gynecology.
Dr. Freed was an avid traveler. It was during his travel that he started collecting veilleuses-theieres (nightlight teapots). His private collection numbered over 650, the largest in the world. The teapots date from 1750 t0 1860.
It is reported that during a visit home his brother, Sylvane Freed asked what he intended to do with his collection. Dr. Freed replied that he would probably give them to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Sylvane then suggested that he donate his collection to his hometown. Dr. Freed followed his brother's suggestion and shared his good fortune with the Trenton community. As a result, the Freed name to the day is known throughout Trenton for their generosity.
The Freed House
The Freed House is a late nineteenth century Victorian home located just east of the Court Square in Trenton that was built by Julius Freed. During the early 1900's, the house became a show place, both inside and outside. The inside was filled was numerous antiques and artwork the family had collected on their journeys and the outside was graced with beautiful flower and vegetable gardens.
The land on which the Freed home was built is also of historic note. The location was the first school for girls in the county. It was incorporated in 1852 as a private school and called the Old Fellow Female Collegiate Institute.
During the Civil War, the school was seized by Federal troops and used as a hospital and campground. Before they left, they burned all of the building. After the war, Mr. Freed bought the land and built the house that remains to this day.
The Freed Home is located at 304 East Eaton Street, Trenton, Tennessee. The home was eventually willed to the City of Trenton and can be opened for public tours or used for meetings or receptions. For reservations or tours, call 855-1091.
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