William Skinner and Sons silk georgette aqua blue fabric length; 1932.

William Skinner and Sons silk georgette aqua blue fabric length; 1932.

Usage conditions apply
William Skinner and Sons silk georgette aqua blue fabric length; 1932. Thin, sheer, silk fabric, dull in texture with a "crepy" effect due to the right and left twist filling yarn. The warp is of finer crepe yarn arranged in pairs--spaced one end apart to give a shadow-like effect in the plain weave structure. Unweighted. Piece dyed aqua blue. Selvedge edges says "Skinner's" woven in the same color as the fabric. Construction: 120 ends -- 3 threads 13/15 crepe 2 right -2 left - 70 turns; 120 picks-3 thread 13/15 crepe 2 right-2 left - 70 turns. 47 inches in reed and 39 inches finished.
William Skinner, a prominent silk manufacturer of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, moved his family and business to Holyoke, MA in 1874. At the time his family consisted of 2 daughters from his first marriage to Nancy Warner, Eleanor Skinner, and Nancy Skinner; along with his second wife Sarah Elizabeth Allen Skinner, and their children, Elizabeth Allen Skinner, William Cobbett Skinner, Joseph Allen Skinner, Ruth Isabelle (Belle) Skinner and Katharine Skinner. With an unlimited source of power and inexpensive immigrant labor available in Holyoke, the silk production and textile manufacturing business grew and profits increased. William Skinner remained at the head of the firm until his death in 1902 when control was turned over to his two sons William C. and Joseph. In 1961 the Skinner family sold the business, with all their trademarks and patents, to Indian Head Mills. The William Skinner & Sons silk and satin mills were earning sales revenues in the millions of dollars and employing over 1,000 people at the time of William Skinner’s death in 1902. As manufacturer of “Skinner’s Satins” he came to be widely known, and his own success was extended philanthropically to Holyoke and its people. The family maintained a residence in Holyoke at their home, Wistariahurst, for eighty years. The Skinners donated the property to the city of Holyoke in 1959. [From the Wistariahurst web site.]
Currently not on view
Object Name
Fabric Length
fabric length
Fabric length
date made
place made
United States: Massachusetts, Holyoke
Associated Place
United States: New Jersey, Allentown
Physical Description
silk (overall material)
aqua blue (overall color)
Georgette (overall style)
open plain weave (overall production method/technique)
average spatial: 36 in x 38 1/2 in; 91.44 cm x 97.79 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Credit Line
Gift of William Skinner and Sons
American Textile Industry
See more items in
Cultural and Community Life: Textiles
American Silks
American Textile Industry
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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