Thursday, December 14, 2017

DWR 2: Wedding Ring/Pickle Dish

Double Wedding Ring, mid 20th century

See yesterday's post on the earliest dated DWR quilt.

Another Question:
What is the difference between a Wedding Ring and a Pickle Dish?

Pickle Dish, about 1910

We sticklers for pattern accuracy will tell you right away. Pickle Dish
has pointed triangles in the arcs (3 sided-shape), 

Pickle Dish
From a Tennessee auction

Wedding Ring has a 4-sided shape. 

Wedding Ring
Those sorta rectangles can be skinny and long

or short and squat.
Depends on the number of pieces per arc.

From Ann Wasserman's collection---2 sets of arcs!
A Pickledish

It doesn't matter what's in the squares between the arcs---it's the shape in the arc
that seems to define them.

Hovering on the edge between the definitions,
but the shapes are 4-sided. I'm sticking with Wedding Ring.

Wedding Ring
Four patches usually fill that space between the arcs in Wedding Rings,
 #303 in BlockBase

Pickle Dishes tend to have more variety in the space between
the arcs. Here's a mid-20th century top with a four patch from eBay last month.

One square in the space

A square in a square
The Pickle Dish pattern with triangles is BlockBase #304 & 305.

I counted the number of triangles when I gave these numbers in my Encyclopedia of Pieced Quilt Patterns, but that was silly. There is too much variation to worry about how many triangles in an arc.

A late 19th-century example that once was in Margaret Cavigga's
collection. She thought it was from Pennsylvania.

From the Wyoming Project & the Quilt Index

Pickle Dish
It's hard to believe blues could fade like this but they did.
Indigo in a few spots, synthetic blue dyes in most of it.
From the Arizona Project & the Quilt Index. Collection of the Pinal County
Historical Society.

Wedding Ring

I could go on and I think I will. Tomorrow.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

DWR 1: Oldest Double Wedding Ring

Velma, working with the continuing Oregon quilt project, sent this photo of a Double Wedding Ring top they recently documented. Looks like 1890-1900 [that should be 1890-1920]. It's the oldest Double Wedding Ring she'd seen. Is it the oldest anywhere?

I'd written a post on this topic about 7 years ago, so I wondered if I had updated information. I spent a little time looking through my picture files.

The old post:

A while ago Alice sent me these pieces with a similar question about age.

I do have photos of several Wedding Rings in this dark color scheme
typical of the 1890-1920 years.

The arcs are made up of shirtings for lights (either woven or printed)
and claret red, mourning grays and blacks, indigos and cadet blues.

This one sold last month at a Dirk Soulis auction in Kansas City.

I believe those are polka dots between the arcs.

All Solids.
 Lola Demetia Sweeten, Liberty County, Texas,
found in the Texas Project. From the Quilt Index. The tan
is thought to have once been green.

This whole quilt looks faded as if it were bleached. I wonder if the tan
setting pieces were once bright red.

Like this one with chrome orange in the four patch
and a pink edge (faded or choice?)

By Allie & Adar Rolling
From the Alabama Decorative Arts Survey

The dark/shirting arcs definitely seem to be a style dating
to about 1900-1920. Red as the setting fabric, also a style characteristic.

From the Robert Bishop collection at the American Museum of Folk Art.
Bishop thought this one might be from Georgia, made by
an African-American woman.

Another case of red fading to tan.

There is so little information attached to these examples, mostly
from online auctions, that we have to make guesses on the date
based on the fabric. Was the fashion
regional? Southern?

From the Cargo Collection at IQSCM #2000_004_0001.
Helen & Robert Cargo collected in Alabama and
specialized in African-American quilts.

Dare we say - the patterns seen to have originated as a regional design: Southern
but Southern/African American?

Back to the original question as to the earliest DWR:
 I do have several pictures of DWR with dates inscribed.

Leigh Fellner at Hart Cottage Quilts posted this one
with a label at the top that says DAP 1915, This is the second oldest DWR
 with a date on it that I've found.
It's done in the blue, claret and gray colorscheme.

Most of the other dated examples are over a dozen years later. Have four pictures
with the date 1928 like this one. You can see the fashion developing for pastels and brighter
solids in addition to a few old-fashioned navy blues, blacks and checks.

The oldest dated example: This magnificent quilt from the Georgia project and their book,
dated in the border 1910. The family name was "Diamond Ring." A whole paragraph is embroidered in the border.

 "J.J.J. and V.D.J. Age 9 months old when this quilt was finished. He was born August 21, 1909. This quilt was made and given a present to J.J. by L.S.J. May 24, 1910."

V.D.J., Vernard Debue Jordan, told the interviewers that the quiltmaker L.S. J. was his mother Laura Savannah Stroud Jordan (1876-1952).  J.J.J. was his father, John Jackson Jordan who was born in slavery in 1862.

Thank you, Laura, for signing and dating the quilt.

Well, I've run out of room so more on early Wedding Rings tomorrow and the next day---until I run out of things to say.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Patience Smith: Sacred to Memory

Quilt dated 1852 with 123 names inked in the border.
Western Pennsylvania Project and the Quilt Index.

The quilt was made for Miss Patience Smith (1806-1874).
In the oval is inked:
"A precious memento from
my pupils at Friends' Institute
New York 1852
Sacred to memory
Patience Smith"

The height of patchwork fashion in 1852:
Turkey red prints and a green appliqued grape vine border.

A family member who obtained the quilt from her grandfather brought it to be documented. She thought it might have been made in Palmyra in western New York, but it is clear that Patience Smith was a teacher in New York City. For many years she was principal of the Friends' Institute there, a Quaker school.

Patience Smith's school moved to East 16th Street in 1860.
Stuyvesant Square is located around 2nd Avenue and 15th Street.

Friends' Seminary (the name was also changed in 1860) is proud of its claim to be the oldest continuously coeducational school in New York City. The school is now housed in four buildings in the Stuyvesant Square Historic District. The building above was finished in 1861 after Patience Smith's tenure. Ads list her as Principal of the Female Department of the coeducational school as late as 1857.

Information from the alumni book of the State Normal College

Smith was herself a pupil at Emma Willard's famous Seminary at Troy, New York. She was also a graduate of the third class of the New York State Normal College at Albany in 1846 at the age of forty or so.

She later lived with older sister Diana Baright in their hometown of Quaker Street, a small community in the town of Duanesburg, Schenectady County, New York. The sisters died within three days of each other in the spring of 1874.

Their obituaries describe them together as the epitome of earnest Quakers:
"Quiet and unobtrusive, these two sisters were desirous of conforming their lives to the golden rule, by ministering to the comfort and happiness of others. Earnest were their efforts in behalf of the cause of temperance, and sincere their desires that something might be done to stem the torrent of crime, and injustice, and wrong-doing so fearfully flooding the land in consequence of the prevalence of this vice. The subject of right education claimed their warm interest. In their intercourse with others, they were kind and affectionate, and were constantly recommending purity of life by their own shining examples."

They are buried in the cemetery at the Friends' Meeting House in Quaker Street.

It's too bad no one specifically mentioned Patience's career as an important teacher and school administrator. The quilt with her students' names must have been treasured till the end of her life

I'll be looking at the connections between schools and album quilts in 2018 on my Civil War Quilts blog. The free Block of the Month postings called Antebellum Album will begin on January 31, 2018. One of the twelve pieced designs will be based on the pattern in Patience Smith's quilt.


See more about the quilt here:

I've been adding quilt photos to Find-A-Grave files lately.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Cochrane's Turkey Red

There was a time when one could not run a Presidential 
campaign without a red bandanna.

Benjamin Harrison & Levi Morton ran on an "America First"
platform in 1888 promising,  according to this bandanna,
"Home Markets for Home Industries"

Earlier red bandanas had to be imported but by the 1880s America boasted a thriving Turkey red
dyeing and printing industry. So the campaign textiles were domestically produced:
A case of a political campaign following through on it's promise to use "home industries."

Chief among the domestic Turkey red printers was Cochrane's Turkey Red.

Many political bandannas have the Cochrane's signature.

Cochrane's Turkey red was a brand name that seemed to have
 commercial value.

Above:  Munson & McNamara in Wichita advertised: "1000 yards of Turkey red prints, six colors; mind you, made by Cochrane the famous Turkey red man. Price 4-3/4 cents. 1894."

Cochrane's Manufacturing also produced yard goods (I imagine the 6 colors they advertised would be figures in a Turkey red background.)
 1904 Cochrane bandanna patent from the files
of the New York Public Library

The Cochrane family came to Massachusetts from Renfrewshire, Scotland in 1844. There seem to have been several Cochranes in the fabric and dyeing business in Massachusetts and I wouldn't
be surprised to find a family feud as there are records of two distinct Cochrane companies involved with Turkey red.

The John Cochranes dyed and printed cotton in the Cochrane Manufacturing Company. The Alexander Cochranes, who came to the U.S. from Scotland in 1847, owned the Cochrane Chemical Company, which "produced Turkey red dye". Turkey red is technically not a dye but a process. The Chemical Company imported synthetic alizarin, the chemical colorant used in the process.

Both families traced their ancestry to Barrhead, Scotland, a town not far from Glasgow and Paisley, centers for Turkey red printing. Turkey red bandanna printing is said to have originated in 1802 by Henry Monteith & Co of Glasgow. An 1851 book on Scotland described Barrhead as "inhabited chiefly by persons employed in the mills, bleachfields, and printfields...."

Malden, Massachusetts, early 20th century

Both Cochrane families wound up in Malden, but links between the two Cochrane branches seem invisible. 

John Cochrane II (1833 - 1916) returned to Scotland to "complete his education" between 1851 and 1854 and went into the textile business in Lynn, Massachusetts, eventually opening the mill in Malden. 

The earliest political textile with Cochrane's signature I've found is the 1880 Hancock & English bandanna.

When John Cochrane began printing Turkey red cottons is unknown. The earliest reference so far was an 1882 account by Keshav Malhar Bhat who wrote about his efforts to bring Turkey red dyeing technology to India. American dyers and printers, always secretive about their methods, refused to see him, but in 1882 he met John Cochrane,  "proprietor of Cochrane's Turkey Red and Mystic Print Works," who showed him "enough of the art to start a small dye-house in India."

Cochrane's Turkey Red Oil Color Robe Prints
A robe print, I assume, is meant for wholecloth coverlets.

Here's one from a Cochrane competitor

Cochrane also did kerchiefs and bandannas in blue.

Two more Cochrane bandannas just for fun

We missed a show at the Cowboy Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City last year. See curator Don Reeves talking about the exhibit A Yard of Turkey Red: The Western Bandanna in this video: