Saturday, September 23, 2017

A Maryland Civil War Quilt?

Eagle medallion quilt with dogtooth appliqued border.

Pictures float around the internet. Pinterest posts lose credits
and copyright---captions are completely gone. 
Where did this picture come from?

It certainly looks like a Civil War quilt made in the 1860s.
The applique floral and grape vines.
The dogtooth border in Turkey red.
The color scheme.
The craftswomanship.
The canons and trumpets indicate an enthusiasm for war, something you
wouldn't see in the 1850s.

The federal shield was important in the 1860s.

Looks like some kind of a Union quilt

Here's what the actual picture looks like. It's hung against an
aluminum-sided wall (?)

Coincidentally, Debbie Cooney and I have been emailing each other lately about those bluebell-like flowers (morning glories?). Here are a few other quilts with similar applique.

Chiswell family quilt, 1848-1855, Montgomery County, Maryland
from the Baltimore Museum of Art's collection

Marylou McDonald took the above photos. I Photoshopped them to
correct the color.

Snapshot of a block from another Maryland album.

From a 1992 auction catalog from Pook & Pook.
Older blocks set together later?

Mathematical Star with applique in the center by 
Rachel K. Trundle Dawson, 
Mt. Auburn, Frederick County, Maryland.
 IQSCM #2009.039. 0042

See more about this unusual star design in a post:

Block signed Emily A. Dawson from Montgomery Co, MD.
Polly Mello's collection.

These applique designs are distinctive not only in the use of the morning-glory-like bloom
but in the free-flowing organization of the flowers and vines. Much American applique is based on more formal and less naturalistic arrangements.

Typical floral applique with roots in Germanic folk
art traditions

Debbie writes: "The Dawsons were major quiltmakers in the area of SW Montgomery Co. right on the Frederick Co. line. So we think the Frederick appliques came from the same source. The BMA quilt has signers from the same area."

Emily was a cousin of Rachel Trundle Dawson's husband. See also three impressive quilts by Rachel's sister-in-law "Big Susan" Dawson (1823-1880) in your copy of the Maryland Project book A Maryland Album.

My guess: The eagle quilt is a Frederick County or Montgomery County, Maryland quilt made in the 1860s. Any ideas on where the picture's from?
UPDATE: While perusing my Encyclopedia of Applique I came across this wreath pattern. #4.55 on page 63, published as Morning Glory in The Family Magazine in 1913. I see when I turn to the back of the book that I knew nothing about The Family---just had a couple of clippings (gave them to IQSCM so I can't check them but I am sure I had no clues as to place or I'd have included it.)

ANOTHER UPDATE: Found the source for the picture. In my files I have a copy that says Laura Fisher Antiques. See Laura showing Martha Stewart some patriotic quilts but not this one:


The Civil War Quilter said...

What a beautiful quilt, wherever it came from. I enjoy seeing how you study a quilt, search for comparable examples in style and fabrics, and work through all your research to come up with your working theory of a date and place for the quilt in question. Very interesting. I've learned a lot about quilt dating from reading your books, articles, and blogs. Thank you!

MaryC said...

I really *like* this quilt! It's just wonderful! I'd like to be able to 'see' the detail of how it's quilted together. I need to finish an applique quilt soon...and, am just undecided on how to quilt it. I thought doing the applique was to be the 'difficult' part - ha.

cspoonquilt said...

They are all so amazing! The bluebells in the top quilt remind me of individual Canterbury Bells and (I might be stretching it) the leaf is consistent with that plant as well? The Morning glories in the other quilts all have heart shape leaves like morning glories?!