Thursday, June 21, 2012

Baltimore Prints

Detail of the Lassovitch quilt

The Baltimore quilts attributed to the workshop of Achsah Wilkins have many common fabrics, among them the fruit panel so popular with American quilters.

This panel is featured in a 1923 British book by Maciver Percival, The Chintz Book, described as a "Decorative Panel. Block-Printed Chintz. Sheraton Period." I noticed in Mary Conroy's 300 Years of Canada's Quilts that the Royal Ontario Museum has a quilt attributed to Yorkshire, England with the same panel "known to have been printed by Thomas Armitage, Bristol, England."

See more examples of quilts with this panel in this April post

Detail of the Lassovitch quilt
Another print often used in Baltimore is a be-ribboned bouquet of seven compound leaves.

Detail of the Jessup quilt attributed to Baltimore

This 63" square by Mary Gorsuch Hessop 1762-1832) includes a very large version of this print. The top is in the collection of the Smithsonian and includes Hewson prints in the center.

 Now I have another print to look for. I wonder if the leaves are not a Hewson print, like the vase and bird prints, printed in various sizes---one design, multiple sizes.

I wonder---wish Dr. Dunton was around to discuss this with.


Denniele said...

I just really like how the flowers form the gentle daisy like border in the Lassovitch quilt...such details. I need several lifetimes to accomplish something so grand. Thanks for sharing.

WoolenSails said...

I notice a lot of designs I have seen in the colonial pattern books are similar to these types of prints. I assume that is where the ladies got their inspiration for their appliqu├ęs since they couldn't afford the fabrics?


Barbara Brackman said...

Debby Cooney sends an email:

It would be nice to channel Dr. Dunton, but you won’t need him for the answer to the question of whether the laurel leaves print is a Hewson. It is not. I have the several lengths of the full print incorporated into an 1820s-30s Maryland Mathematical Star quilt. The fabric is finer than what Hewson uses, probably dates from the 1820s. Most of the 28” width is occupied by the floral swag; the leaves & central flower spike are printed as a half spray on the each side of the swag close to the selvedge. So the quiltmaker had to piece the two parts together to create the spray. We often see the swags and sprays in the same quilt

The William G. (for Goodwin) Wilkins listed in the 1830 census is Wm & Achsah’s son. Ronda McAllen (who is researching Achsah Wilkins's quilts) finally found the elder William as William Wilking w. 4 slaves & 2 free.