1835 - 1845 Quaker Trousseau Pieced Quilt

An intriguing note came with this framed medallion quilt when it was donated: “The Quaker Quilt. Phil. ca 1840 made for wedding of bride of early Philadelphia Quaker Abolitionist of pieces from the gowns of her trousseau.” Unfortunately there is no indication of the quilt maker or ownership.
The focus of the 41-inch central square, “Star of Bethlehem,” is set off by a 5-inch octagonal border. Additional pieced and plain borders frame this variation of a medallion-style quilt. The beige, tan, brown, rust, and light grey silks and satins utilized for the pattern would be typical of the Quaker esthetic and period. The quilt is lined with roller printed cottons and filled with wool. It is quilted with a variety of geometric patterns (grid, diagonal, chevron, and parallel lines), feathered and flowering vines in the borders, and a spray of flowers in the corner squares. This quilt is a precisely designed example of Quaker quilts in the mid-19th century.
Currently not on view
Object Name
date made
Physical Description
fabric, silk, satin, cotton, wool (overall material)
thread, cotton (overall material)
filling, wool (overall material)
overall: 107 in x 121 in; 272 cm x 307 cm
place made
United States: Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Cultures & Communities
Family & Social Life
Domestic Furnishings
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Textiles
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Arthur M. Greenwood

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