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    William Henry Harrison: A Colorful Jacquard-Woven Coverlet. The border is decorated with folk art profiles of the presidents, each of whom is named, beginning with Washington and ending with Harrison, the incumbent president when the coverlet was made. Over the years, we have seen small sections from this item, depicting a single president, but had never before encountered the complete coverlet. These woven pieces were highly popular across the middle-American states from the 1830s-1850s. Anyone who has attended quality antique shows is familiar with the genre. While many were carefully designed and crafted by individual weavers in their homes, there were also commercial designs, and we presume the present example would fall in this category. While each example had to be hand-woven, it was not uncommon to produce multiple examples of the same design. The fact that fragments from other coverlets have appeared supports the "commercial" attribution for this particular coverlet. Also, it is woven as a single piece rather than assembled from sections, indicating that it was made on a large, stationary loom rather than the smaller, portable models used by itinerant weavers or in private homes.

    It relates closely to a similar coverlet which is pictured in various reference books and appears occasionally on the market, with profiles of Zachary Taylor around the border. Although Harrison is not the prime focus here, we regard it as quite legitimate to term this a "Harrison item," just as prints with the presidents up through the incumbent at that time are viewed as items for that president.

    Overall display condition is very nice. It has no major damage, but only several small, inconsequential holes. There is some staining in one corner, as shown, and some typical wear on the un-fringed edge. This is the edge that would be pulled up over the sleeping owners, and hence would be handled much more than the decorative, fringed edges, which went around the sides and foot of the bed. A most unusual early presidential textile, with wonderful "period feel" and display appeal. Measures: 84" x 84".

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    February, 2007
    26th-27th Monday-Tuesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 0
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 299

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