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Pieced Four Patch and Appliqued Crib Quilt

ca. 1850
Origin: America, Virginia, Stafford County
45 1/2" x 49 1/2" (116 x 126 cm)
Plain and printed cottons
Museum Purchase
Acc. No. 2000.609.2
This is a small crib quilt designed with a center applique of symmetrical tulip flowers and leaves in red and dark green on white cotton ground. It has a wide pieced border of Four Patch squares in yellow and brown cottons connected by pink sashing. The quilt is backed with red-, brown-, and white-printed cotton and bound in a one-half-inch strip of brown cotton. The quilting pattern in 6-7 running stitches per inch consists of parallel lines in the Four Patch areas with clamshell in the center block and outline in the applique.
Label:Nancy Virginia Alsop, nicknamed "Jenny Wren," made this crib quilt prior to her first marriage at age 19, perhaps in anticipation of a future wedding and family. The center appliqué of symmetrical tulip flowers and leaves is surrounded by a wide border of Four Patch squares. Virginia also made a larger quilt in an Irish Chain variation using the same printed cottons found in this quilt. She continued piecing well into her busy years as a wife and mother. A red and white quilt in the pattern Robbing Peter to Pay Paul is signed "VW," after her marriage to William Waite.
Provenance:This quilt with two others created by Nancy Virginia Alsop Chewning Waite(2000.609.3 and 2000.609.4) descended in the family until they were acquired from a family member by the museum.
The quilt is said to have been made by Jenny (Virginia) Alsop, of Stafford and Spotsylvania Counties, who married William Waite. A photograph in the family's collection shows a woman who is thought to be the quilt maker, see file. The photo can be dated ca. 1905 by the clothing and frame. Genealogical research suggests that the quilt maker was Nancy Virginia Alsop, born May 21, 1834 in Stafford County, Virginia and died in 1915. She was the daughter of William Alsop of Spotsylvania County and Manissa Harding of Stafford County. Her first marriage was to Joseph E. Chewning; they were married in 1853 in Stafford County, and the children were born in Spotsylvania County. Her second marriage was to William L. Waite of Spotsylvania County. That second marriage date is unknown, but their child was born in 1869.

Notes from a telephone call between Linda Baumgarten and Jane Van Leeuwen state that "Aunt Jenny's" home was just beyond Spotsylvania Courthouse, northwest from Fredericksburg; it was a town with its own courthouse.