Ira Hadsell; coverlet; Figured and Fancy, double-cloth; 1859; New York

Ira Hadsell; coverlet; Figured and Fancy, double-cloth; 1859; New York

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Ira Hadsell (b. 1813) of Palmyra, New York wove this red and white, Figured and Fancy, double cloth coverlet for Catharine M. Wilson in 1859. The coverlet design is symmetrical along the center seam and feature a large compote overflowing with flowers and accent by more botanical designs, birds, and cornucopias. There are borders on all four sides featuring swag garland designs. The warps and wefts are made up of red, S-spin wool singles and white 3-ply cotton yarns. The date"1859" appears woven under each of the cornucopias. "Catherine M. Wilson woven at Palmyra NY by Ira Hadsell" is woven along the bottom border. The coverlet measures 86 inches by 78.75 inches. Ira Hadsell was born March 16, 1813, in Marion, New York. He was the son of Sarah Hadsell and William Cogswell. Ira Hadsell led an interesting, if somewhat difficult life. He was "bound out" to A.R. Galloway and apprenticed as a canal worker at the age of eight. From age 14 through 26, Ira worked at various jobs on the Erie Canal until returning to Palmyra in 1839. Eventually, Ira went to work for James Van Ness, another well-known weaver of Wayne County. Ira Hadsell had finally found his calling. During his lifetime, Hadsell wove over 1,180 coverlets. Ira married Lydia Dansits Scudder (1810-1879) April 9, 1840. On December 30, 1879, he married Laura Jane Ingram (1855 - 1945). He died July 17, 1896. The coverlet was made for Catharine M. Wilson. She was the wife of Daniel P. Wilson and was born c. 1819 in New York. Wilson was the great-grandmother of the donor.
Currently not on view
Object Name
coverlet, figured
Object Type
double weave
jacquard coverlets
Date made
Hadsell, Ira
place made
United States: New York, Palmyra
Physical Description
Figured and Fancy (overall style)
double cloth (overall production method/technique)
red (overall color)
white (overall color)
wool. cotton (overall material)
overall: 86 in x 78 3/4 in; 218.44 cm x 200.025 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Credit Line
Gift of Elinor W. Allard (Mrs. Dwight W.)
See more items in
Cultural and Community Life: Textiles
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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