Last week I posted on my skepticism about the date inscribed on this crib quilt.
Could it be that a flag dated 1862 was used in a quilt made in the 1870s? Or that the date 1862 commemorated an event that happened a decade before the quilt was made?
Anthony Iasso shows this hand-made 35 star flag:
The flags may indeed have been made in 1862. See a hand-made calico flag attributed to the Civil War years in this post:
Do note that the date on the flag in the charm quilt is upside down. Or the flag is upside down---a traditional signal of distress.
The comments last week were helpful. Barbara Schaffer noted that the crib quilt was once part of textile historian Florence Peto's collection:
"Peto had originally purchased this quilt from a local [NJ] dealer and wrote about it in a letter to Elizabeth Richardson on June 12, 1949: '. . . woe is me, I fell for it. Cute. Entire center of tiny one-inch squares, diagonalled - half light, half dark; makes sparkling tile pattern. The border - red and white stripes which form an American Flag at two of the corners. The quiltmaker was able to squeeze in 6 white stars on the blue field - but - ? homespun backing but the date is 1862. The calicoes are same as those of the swatches that came in a carton I purchased recently from The Patchwork House (antiques) in Hightstown, NJ.' "
This week the defense gets an argument too. Or....
Why I may be wrong in being such a skeptic.
Clues to an actual 1860s date:
4) Red, white and blue solid fabrics in the border.
5) Prints show nothing really typical of the 1870s or '80s.
4) Red, white and blue solids
Quilt sold by James Julia auctions
The idea of using solid-color cottons to make a patriotic quilt
was popular during the Civil War.
Inspired by this July 1861 pattern in Peterson's Magazine
Maryland quilt dated 1861 from the Maryland project's book,
Maryland Album: Quiltmaking Traditions, 1644-1934
The striped border on the crib quilt dated 1862 is consistent with that style.
5) Prints show nothing typical of post-Civil-War years.
Detail of the triangles in the crib quilt dated 1862.
This may be the strongest argument for an actual 1862 date. I haven't seen the quilt in the cloth but one can see a lot of detail in the online photos. I was looking for particular prints that were quite popular in the 1870s and '80s but not typical of the 1860s. I found only negative evidence.
Crib quilt dated 1883 from the Pat Nickols Collection at the Mingei Museum
I was looking for date-specific styles like this lace print pictured above. Lace prints were a fad in the 1870s and '80s. But nothing specifically "1870s" jumped out at me in the flag quilt.
Charm quilt inscribed "Centennial 1876"
Even better evidence of a later date would have been one of these prints commemorating the nation's 1876 Centennial ( the two darker grid-set patches on either side of the date above.)
The crib quilt, which has a different brown cast
to it than the quilts made after 1870. It's a subtle clue.
Those triangles could very well be prints from the 1860s, making the case that this crib quilt was not only made during the Civil War, but it is the earliest date-inscribed charm quilt in my files.
It's a hung jury.