Victorian Embroidered Sampler Quilt
Unidentified Quilt Maker, initialed "SW" (or "WS") in embroidery
Dated "1882" in embroidery
70 x 75 inches
"Rock Island, Ill" in embroidery
Simply Excellent Condition!
The family story on this quilt is that it was made by a (male) tailor, an ancestor of the current owner. Sadly, the name of the maker has been lost along the quilt's way to here. (PSA: Please label your quilts!)
The family story does match certain features of the quilt. The rectangular pieces are a variety of very tightly woven wools, which could well have been scraps of suiting a tailor would have had at hand. Amazingly, the wool is completely intact, with no holes or moth damage at all.
The hand embroidery, in a rainbow of colors, is exquisitely executed, clearly by a very experienced needleworker. A tailor perhaps? These are the kinds of embroidered designs we see on late 19th century Victorian Crazy Quilts, and red work quilts of the same period.
Whoever made this handsome textile created an overall excellent design with superb hand embroidery. Maker seems to have been seriously perfectionistic, and this, in its way, is a perfect quilt! Excellent Condition!