Textiles in James Garfield's Home... Come along on my tour!
Recently, my husband and I headed to Ohio and Pennsylvania to see what we could see. It was a multi-purpose trip, and I went with expectations that I’d be able to share many of our adventures with you. However, up until now I haven’t had much time in which to do this.
One of the places we went to in Mentor, Ohio, was to Present James Garfield’s home. It was a fascinating tour, and I knew that I would try to get pictures to share with you.
Now, I’m not a huge history buff, and I just discovered why. Last night I pointed out to my husband that most of the reason why I don’t enjoy history is that it seems to center around war. (Especially the history shows he watches.) However, with James Garfield, this home was NOT centered around war, and I found the entire tour delightful. (We recently watched a history show about the story of food development in our country and it was totally fascinating, and there wasn’t a fighter jet in the multi-day show!)
I was on a quest to find textiles, in whatever way I could. I wanted to see if quilts were used in the home, and if not, from what was the bedding made.
Thankfully our tour guide let us ask questions. Of course, I, being Rachael, the ever curious, and on a quest to find out information, which I could later on share with you, asked if he knew whether the quilts were authentically old, and if not, how old were they, and if they knew for a fact that these were the types of bedding that they used.
Of course, being a young guy, about 32, bedding was not his forte, and he said that he had never been asked this question before. He said that he knew that they did have someone make the quilts and “refresh” them every few years.
Naturally, that answered my question as to whether these quilts were super old or what. Obviously NOT.. not if they were replaced or refreshed every few years. In fact, some of us own quilts older than the ones on the beds I’m going to put on here. However, the time period was the 1870’s and 1880’s and I find it interesting that they had some ideas as to what went on the beds normally during that time period. I was, truly, and truly disappointed that they did not have actual bedding preserved from that time period.
We were not able to go into the rooms, but we were able to lean in and look and take pictures.
So, come with me as I lead you on a tour around the historic home of James Garfield, 20th President of the United States.
I’m not particularly fascinated with beds or sleep, but beds happen to be where the quilts are, so I concentrated most of my photo taking efforts on the bedding and/or other textiles in the house.
Window treatments, bedding and dresser scarves. When you start hunting for textiles, you really can see a lot of them!
Because both Becky and I play the piano and we’ve both visited Turkey now, where you see these gorgeous Turkish rugs, I had to include the next two pictures!
Below was my first glimpse of what I thought was a quilt in the Garfield home. However, upon close examination, I could not see any real quilting. Maybe some of you can tell me if it’s just a pieced top or if there’s straight line quilting in there!
Then another bedroom had what appeared to be a quilt! I was so thankful. However, this is where I began to question authenticity. Things appeared to be a little too even. A little too like a machine. However, I realized that these people may have used a sewing machine, as Elias Howe made his invention in the mid 1800’s.
Then, several of the bedrooms had those stretchy bedspreads or knitted or crocheted bedding. They were beautiful, but not quilts!
Finally, off in the distance in one of the bedrooms, I spotted a quilt! I was all excited. But, they would not let us enter, so I’m going to zoom in on it so that you can see how they did it and the quilting on the quilt itself
I hope you enjoyed the tour. It cost you less and took less of your time than mine did! I kept it to just the textiles. However, if you’re a history fan and enjoy lots of fun trivia, this is a great home to visit. Yes, spring for the tour guide, and be a team player! It’s lots of fun, and you learn, oh, so much more, than just touring without the guide!
Be sure to check out what we have for you in the store!