William Skinner and Sons wool back rayon ribbed poplin scarlet fabric length; 1946.

William Skinner and Sons wool back rayon ribbed poplin scarlet fabric length; 1946.

Usage conditions apply
William Skinner and Sons wool back rayon ribbed poplin fabric length; 1946. Strong, soft flexible fabric with face of fine warp threads confining separated groups of filling threads so as to form a series of ribs across the width of the fabric with heavily napped back. Yarn sizes - warp 100/40 viscose rayon, weft 2 picks 300 denier viscose rayon, 2 picks 1/26 worsted. Fiber content by weight is 70% rayon 30% wool. Scarlet colored. Used for B-9 helmet for Army-Air Force and lining for jackets, coats and military capes.
William Skinner emigrated from England to Massachusetts in 1843, finding work as silk dyer. He eventually opened his own silk manufacturing company, the Unquomonk Silk Co., making silk threads and yarns for weaving and sewing. In 1874, the mill was destroyed when the Mill River Dam gave way. Skinner moved his company a few miles away, to Holyoke, Massachusetts, and rebuilt the mill, expanding production to include woven fabrics (Skinner satins were nationally famous) and silk braids. He ran the company until his death in 1902, and the firm stayed in the family, and remained in operation in Holyoke, until 1961, when his heirs sold it to Indian head Mills, which immediately closed the Holyoke operation.
Currently not on view
Object Name
Fabric Length
Fabric length
date made
place made
United States: New York, New York City
Associated Place
United States: New Jersey, Allentown
Physical Description
wool (overall material)
viscose rayon (overall material)
scarlet (overall color)
special weave; ribbed (overall production method/technique)
overall: 37 in x 43 in; 93.98 cm x 109.22 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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