1876 Emma St. Clair Whitney's Pieced Silk Quilt

Description
“1876 Emma St. Clair Whitney Centennial” is printed on the center rosette of this silk quilt. Two-inch plain colored silk hexagons are pieced into rosettes, each separated by black hexagons. An 8-inch silk border is quilted, 8 stitches per inch, with a 5-banded cable pattern. The silk lining is hand-quilted in a shell pattern in the center with a 4-banded cable pattern on the border.
Emma St. Clair Nichols was born on September 26, 1840 in Pottsville, Pennsylvania. She married William Whitney (1823-1899) on October 2, 1862. He was a lawyer and Civil War veteran. They raised four children. In 1891 Emma published a book, Michael Hillegas and his Descendants, a memoir of her great grandfather. Michael Hillegas (1729-1804) was the First Treasurer of the United States. In the forward she mentioned that, “. . . [it] is hoped that the facts and materials here collected and classified, will be found serviceable to some later writer. . .” Emma died April 4, 1895. Her 1876 Centennial silk quilt is her legacy.
Location
Currently not on view
date made
1876
maker
Whitney, Emma St. Clair
place made
United States: Pennsylvania, Pottsville
Physical Description
fabric, silk, satin (overall material)
thread, silk, cotton (overall material)
Measurements
overall: 80 in x 74 in; 203 cm x 188 cm
ID Number
TE*T17755.000
catalog number
T17755.000
accession number
316364
Credit Line
Gift of Col. and Mrs. Whitney Ashbridge
subject
Quilting
1876
Numismatics
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Textiles
Domestic Furnishings
Quilts
Textiles
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

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