Coverlet, Jacquard double-cloth; c.1870-1880; Pennsylvania

This coverlet features a large central rose medallion with starburst at the center surrounded by an ivy garland. A triangle-motif section rings this followed by a wide border of roses and foliate designs. There are bouquets of flowers in each corner. This coverlet is double cloth, but the weave is unbalanced. The colored wool weft yards are loosely twisted 2-ply, s-twist, z-spun in red, green, blue, and purple, and the white cotton singles are z-spun. There is also a cotton drab warp of z-spun singles and white cotton z-spun singles. The weaver tripled these singles in the warp and wove them as one. There is a self-fringe on 2 sides, and an applied woven fringe in wool weft colors stitched to lower edge. The coverlet was purchased by the donor’s mother sometime in the late nineteenth century. She lived in Newport, Maine and kept the coverlet sealed in a trunk until 1913 when it was gifted to her daughters. It is likely that Mrs. Grindell purchased the coverlet while visiting Philadelphia for the Centennial Exposition. Coverlets in this style and color combination were sold at the Expo, and coverlets with horizontal color banding have been associated with Pennsylvania or Pennsylvania-trained weavers throughout the nineteenth century. The colors used to dye the wool are synthetic dyes that became popular during the 1860s onward, lending more credence to the dating of these coverlet c. 1870-1880. There is no center seam and the design, although bold, lacks the refinement of earlier, hand-woven coverlets, suggesting fully-industrialized, power-loom, factory production.
Currently not on view
date made
late 19th century
place made
United States: Pennsylvania
Physical Description
cotton, wool (overall material)
Figured and Fancy (overall style)
double weave (overall production method/technique)
overall: 82 in x 75 in; 208.28 cm x 190.5 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Credit Line
Gift of Mrs. Sarah Ayer and Miss Mary Grindell
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Textiles
Domestic Furnishings
Data Source
National Museum of American History


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