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Bed Rug Fragment
1770
Embroiderer:Embroidered by Unknown
Hand-embroidered wool on a hand-woven twill-woven wool ground, backed with plain-woven linen and twill-woven cotton
Primary Dimensions (height x width): 83 1/2 x 54in. (212.1 x 137.2cm)
Credit Line: The Newman S. Hungerford Museum Fund
Gallery Copy: Only the center of this bed rug remains, but it is a fine example of the style and material of bed rugs associated primarily with Connecticut families, or with families that emigrated from Connecticut. Bed rug production flourished from 1770–1810, and may have been spurred at the outset by Patriot resistance to British imports. The ground is a coarse blanket, handwoven from homespun wool yarn. The yarns that create the decoration are also homespun—thick and loosely twisted, perfect for creating a fuzzy surface to trap air and retain heat, but too coarse to execute detailed motifs. The bold and abstract design is created in a limited, rich palette of locally available dyes. Covering every inch of the ground was a time-consuming, laborious project.
Description: Bed rug made of cut-loop embroidered light and dark blue, cream, green, and light brown wool on a hand-woven twill-woven wool ground. The pattern consists of three light and dark blue vines emerging from a single stem at the bottom center; the vines curve toward the top of the bed rug in semi-circles that each surround a cream and green flower. Additional vines to either side of this design are truncated; both the left and right sides of the bed rug have been cut off. The background is light brown. The initials and date "HH/ 1770" are embroidered at the top of the bed rug; a bracket is embroidered above and below the date. Condition: The bed rug has been cut down at the left and right sides. The lower right corner has rodent damage and dirt stains. The rug has been interlined with a plain-woven linen sheet, then backed with a black/natural changeable twill-woven cotton. The bed rug is faded slightly.
Inscription: The initials and date "HH/ 1770" are embroidered at the top of the bed rug; a bracket is embroidered above and below the date.
Object Number: 2001.77.0
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