Consisting of research and collections that contributed to her writing of "Decorative Art of Victoria's Era," this series offered the clearest view of Lichten's workings as a researcher. She was methodical in her categorization of ideas, often marking notes with a label that identified its place in the research project. Because of the close alignment between the research files and the card files, it is evident that Frances Lichten was thorough and logical in her work. If she changed her mind about where an idea should be filed, she would re-mark the page with a different colored pencil so that she could identify the chronology of these decisions.
Contained in this series are many objects dating from the 1850s through the turn of the century. There are cartes de visites, tin type photo plates, paper valentines and paper doilies. There are fabric samples, hand-tinted prints from "Godey's Lady Book," a signed picture of Sarah Josepha Hale, patterns for embroidered images, original articles from a variety of sources, as well as modern imitations of Victorian craftsmanship. These delicate objects are intermingled with notes and drawings that would serve to explain the Victorian sensibility to a wide audience.
There is evidence in the card files that this series contains material for another Victorian research project about Eliza Leslie that was never fully formed. Because of the incomplete nature of these research files, they were incorporated into this series for better accessibility to researchers.