I've been going on about this quilt in the collection of the Shelburne Museum, which has been considered a Civil War quilt since the 1950s.
Scroll down for more posts to read more of the rant. I am thinking it's British rather than American
and it could even have something to do with the Crimean War.
The four female figures in the center....
La Belle Chocolatiere
Florence Peto saw chocolate.
I often think of chocolate as the answer to everything but....
What if she isn't a lady with a cup of chocolate,
but rather a Lady with a Lamp?
Illustrated London News 1855
Say: Florence Nightingale, the angel of the Crimean War, known as the Lady with the Lamp,
who made nightly rounds checking on her injured soldiers with an oil lamp in hand.
Inexpensive prints of Florence Nightingale and her fellow nurses were quite popular in the 1850s in England, possibly inspiring a silhouette of a nurse.
The Lady with the Lamp became iconic enough that an image of an oil lamp remains a symbol of nursing.
Read a little about Nightingale and her lamp in this text book of nursing:
Now, I have no more evidence that this is a Crimean War quilt than Peto had it was a Civil War quilt---actually less. She may have heard a family story. I am just making it up. I wish she were around to discuss this with---perhaps over a cup of hot chocolate---or a chocolate martini.
I'd say, "Futhermore, Florrie, it's not quilted but a finished spread. Such a British finish to patchwork."
So after three posts, I rest my case.