Abraham Lincoln was inaugurated as President of the
on March 4, 1861. United States 's Platform can mark the anniversary week. Lincoln
Lincoln in 1861
The quilt pattern dates back to the mid-nineteenth century. We don't know what quilters called it then but magazines and pattern companies gave it many names at the end of the 19th century and into the twentieth. Among them: Shoo-Fly, Monkey Wrench and Hole In the Barn Door. In her 1935 book Carrie Hall called the nine patch
's Platform. Lincoln
Several photos of the inauguration on the steps of the Capitol building were taken.
The new dome was not yet finished and
the building remained a construction project for several years.
"He was very profuse in apologies and told me that he had made inquiries & found that no tickets were to be issued since they would have to issue 10,000 if any at all. He said my best plan would be to take my chance with the crowd."
On the morning of the 4th Charles went by Willard's Hotel. Due to his family's political connections he was invited:
"to the Presidents rooms & found a good many people there consisting however, I believe of his & his wife's relations…Mrs. Lincoln is a very pleasant looking woman & is by no means coarse looking as has been said. She was dressed in a brown silk with a black velvet cloak & a green plush bonnet."
Of course Charles's mother (and we) would want
to know what the First Lady was wearing.
Here she is in evening dress in 1861,
wearing a silk with roses on a ground of pin dots.
Bowditch was swept up with the Lincoln/Todd party and observed the ceremony with the family.
Charles is somewhere in the crowd here,
close to the wooden canopy at the center.
Cutting for an 8" Finished Block for Lincoln's Platform (#1646 in my Encyclopedia of Pieced Quilt Patterns & BlockBase)"About 1 o'clock we went out to the front of the Capitol the steps of which had been floored over & took our seat. We then saw Messrs. Lincoln & Buchanan come down the steps & the Judges of the Supreme Court.
then delivered his inaugural amid much cheering & shouting & afterwards took his oath of office….Uncle Thomas calls the Inaugural [speech] wishy-washy. I have not read it & was not near enough to hear what he said. Lincoln
Thus you see the Inauguration has gone through very successfully & safely & Mr. Lincoln has not been made the victim of any hostile inventions or infernal machines [bombs]…Mr. Lincoln has rec'd a great many threatening letters which of course made the family feel very uncomfortably."
A - Cut 2 light and 2 dark squares 3-1/2". Cut each in half diagonally with one cut.
You need 4 dark and 4 light triangles
B - Cut 4 dark and 4 light rectangles 3-1/8" x 1-7/8".
C - Cut 1 light square 3-1/8"
Charles Pickering Bowditch's account of the Inauguration was published as "'We had a very fine day': Charles Bowditch Attends Lincoln's Inauguration" by Katherine W. Richardson in the Essex Institute Historical Collections, Volume 124, Number 1, January 1988, pages 28-35.
If you are worried about Charles being suspended from Harvard, don't fret. He went back to school and had an admirable career as an anthropologist. Read his lengthy obituary here.
Another of Mary Lincoln's silk dresses from 1861.
This one is in the collection of the Smithsonian.