Wednesday, July 02, 2008

documentation problems

My neighbor Margaret died this winter at the age of nearly 90. She moved into the house in 1953, and was instrumental in making the block a neighborhood, helping start the Women's Club and the block party.
Her children have been taking apart the house and gave this quilt to me. There is a yellowed card with it:
"Quilt made by Mary Shogrin as a young girl. Circa 1905"
This was Margaret's grandmother's name and she was from Kansas.
I think the quilt is actually earlier than that, as the fabrics look 1890s and it is hand carded cotton batting. But mostly, I think it is wrong because the date and the age of her grandmother don't sync.
Margaret's grandmother would have been a young girl in the 1800s. Her mother may have been young right at the turn of the century. The card is the only thing that links it to 1905--the hand made batt, fabrics, and name associated with it indicate it be earlier.
Even with documentation, dates may be off.
I have totally lost when I made some of my quilts. They don't all get labels!


Vicki W said...

What a lovely gift!

Carol E. said...

That's a wonderful quilt! Many of mine are missing labels, too. And the last one I washed now has a plain white label on the back. Dang.

Karen said...

What a nice gift. Makes you stop and think about the importance of documentation.

Finn said...

Hi Lynn, first let me wish you a belated Happy Birthday! Congrats on the BIG 50..yet another milestone in the road.
The quilt is a lovely gift, and you are lucky to have received it.

I suppose it's possilbe there were more than one "Mary" in the family. That would be one possibility, which I think are probably endless without more concrete information.
The fabrics could very well be MUCH older,existing even as blocks in a scrapbag, and certainly as just pieces of fabric.
Cotton batting stayed popular for a very long time...up into the mid 1950 and the increasing use of rayon and invention of Dacron. The polyester we know now, wasn't until the 60's.
That particular bow tie is an older form of the pattern I think. Usually the knot isn't that wide, on newer quilts.
It could be that the best documentation it will have is who it came from and who owns it now and the "maybe" information on the yellow card.
Hope you and the family are doing well, and that your eyes are still serving you well. Hugs, Finn

Helen said...

What a lovely treasure and an encouragement to us all to label our quilts.