Street Address
515 Hilltop Drive
Rockwell Hall
Kent, OH 44242
Mailing Address
PO Box 5190
Kent, OH 44242
phone: 330-672-3450
Monday - Tuesdayclosed
General Admission: $5
Seniors: $4
Ages (7-18): $3
Children under 7: Free
Groups of 10 or more: $4
Gift Shop
Group Tours
Jean Druesedow, Director
phone: 330-672-3450
Sara Hume, Curator/Assistant Professor
phone: 330-672-3450
Joanne Fenn, Collections Manager/Registrar/Asst. Professor
phone: 330-672-3450
Jim Williams, Exhibition Designer/Preparator
phone: 330-672-3450
Stephanie L. Roach, Administrative Assistant
phone: 330-672-6450


Fashion and Decorative Arts Museum

The Kent State Museum contains important collections of fashion and decorative arts. Its eight galleries feature changing exhibitions of work by many of the world's great artists and designers. Closely linked to the Shannon Rodgers and Jerry Silverman School of Fashion Design and Merchandising at Kent State University, the Museum provides students with first-hand experience with historic and contemporary fashions, as well as costumes representing many of the world's cultures. An extensive collection of American glass, fine furniture, textiles, paintings and other decorative arts combine to give context to the study of design.

The Museum serves both the University and the community through exhibitions, public programs, and research appointments in the collections.

Opened to the public in October 1985, the Kent State University Museum was founded with an initial contribution from New York dress manufacturers Jerry Silverman and Shannon Rodgers. Their gift included 4,000 costumes and accessories, nearly 1,000 pieces of decorative art and a 5,000-volume reference library. In the 1960s, Shannon Rodgers began collecting what is now considered one of the finest period costume collections in the United States, today totaling more than 40,000 pieces. The Tarter/Miller collection of some 10,000 pieces of glass formed the second major gift to the Museum. Together with the other decorative arts collected by Rodgers and Silverman, the Museum holds one of the most comprehensive teaching collections of fashionable design from the 18th century to the present.


The Kent State University Museum is dedicated to providing the university and the community with access to fine, original works of art. The museum collects, exhibits, interprets and preserves the artifacts entrusted to it. The museum is an invaluable teaching tool as well as a superb means of informing the general public of the artistry and diversity of the world's peoples. Through exhibition and interpretation the museum provides an essential point of view for study of the arts and cultures represented by the collections. The museum serves students, the entire university community, the residents of Ohio and the nation. Through loans to international exhibitions, it represents the university and the State of Ohio to the world. The programming is intended to reach the widest possible audience in order to share the pleasure and enrichment that studying the collections engenders. As one of the most public faces of the university, the museum is a cultural resource and gateway through which the academic pursuits and intellectual life represented by the museum and the university can be disseminated globally.

Artifacts Collections

The Kent State University Museum welcomes students and the general public to view, study and research from its collection of historic, contemporary, and world fashions. The collection goes beyond clothing and textiles to also include American glass, furniture, paintings and other decorative arts. The Museum also houses a library of books and historic periodicals dedicated to fashion and decorative arts. All works in the Museum library are catalogued on KentLINK and while non-circulating are accessible to researchers by appointment.

In addition to fashions from many of the top design houses, a number of designers have left their archives of photographs and sketches to the Museum.

Research Collections

Research appointments

The Kent State University Museum is an important resource for instructors, researchers and students. The Museum, its collections and the Museum Library are available for students to supplement their studies in the classroom.

Instructors are encouraged to make arrangements to bring their classes to the Museum. The staff welcomes class visits to the galleries and can also accommodate appointments for classes to see selections from the collections not otherwise on view. We are also able to make individual appointments with students and researchers to view specific designer or period garments, textiles, furniture pieces and other types of art work in our collection.

To make an appointment (group or individual), please contact the Collections Manager/Registrar, Joanne Fenn at or by phone at 330-672-0305.



Performance Areas


Access: Staff Only

Appointment required: Yes


Wheelchair Accessible


The Museum Store

The Museum Store is located on the left side of the atrium as you enter the Museum. Jewelry, apparel, books, stationery, and other fashion-related merchandise are available for purchase. All faculty, staff, and students with a current KSU I.D. receive a discount of 20% off regular price items in the Museum Store. Questions may be addressed to


The Museum relies on its many valued volunteers, who serve as docents, greeters, museum store associates, and in collections where sewing skills are needed to cover hangers and stabilize garments.

Gift Shop

Group Tours