I thought today I would share another old family quilt. This quilt is the oldest quilt in the collection, and tho I cannot tell you its exact date, I can take what I do know, and that which I believe to be true, and together, come close, hopefully, to the truth.
I believe that this quilt, dates from circa1865 to 1871. It is sadly damaged, in a pattern which indicates, that its worst damage, was caused by a beard. I do know, that it was cut down, and the edging replaced, by great grandma, Anne Elston Krout-Scearce. At that time she put the initials, HMS on the border. The only member of the family, bearing those initials, was her husband, Harry Marshall Scearce, the son of Dr. John Thomas Scearce, the Civil War surgeon. Harry and Anne were, grandma Maryann Scearce-Hanners, paternal grandparents.
I know that Harry did not have a beard, and was always clean shaven, so he could not have been the person, who wore holes in the top and bottom of the quilt. The quilt at present is 74" x 65", but since it has been cut down, I do not know what its original dimensions were.
If it was always grt. grandpa, Harry Marshall Scearce's, which I believe it was. Made by the loving hands of his mother. It is very likely she made it for his birth, which occurred, June 27, 1865, at Fort Marshall, Maryland, just outside the city of Baltimore, in the last year of the Civil War. His father, Dr. John Thomas Scearce, was head surgeon, in charge of the hospital at Fort Marshall. grt. grt. grandpa, John had sent a letter to his wife, Elizabeth, in which he had placed 100 dollars traveling expenses, requesting that she come to Fort Marshall, to have her baby. Which she did. When Harry was born, he was given the middle name of Marshall, in honor of where he had been born.
In all of my family research, the only man in the family, fitting the time and place, for this quilt, and also who had access to it, and wore a beard, is Dr. John Thomas Scearce, Harry's father. This makes me very certain, that this quilt belonged to them, came from Danville, Indiana, to Noblesville, Indiana, where they lived after the Civil War. Then it made the long journey in 1910, first to Seattle, Washington, when Harry & Anne came out West. Then it went to their log home in Mosier, Oregon, in 1911, to Hoosier Heights Ranch as it was called. In the 1920's it moved with them to Hood River, and when Harry died, in 1928, it was passed down to his son, grt. grandpa, Richard "Dick" Gregg Scearce.
I asked grandma, when the poor thing had come to be in the red barn, and she seemed to think, it had been put there, when her folks bought the farm, as her mother thought it just an old rag, and used it to protect the aforementioned crocks. So for something like, 40 years, that poor old quilt, sat in that dirty old barn. I am still amazed, it didn't become a rats nest.
The only thing I think I forgot to mention, is that it is quilted with a white, solid cotton back, with a very thin cotton batting, between the layers.
Thus ends the tail, of the blue and white quilt. If you have more information, regarding the pattern of this quilt, I would be delighted to hear any comments.
NOTE: After much web searching the patterns most closely patterned like this quilt are: Broken Sugar Bowl a.k.a. Road To The White House & Road to Arkansas. Both are variations on a Jacob's Ladder Pattern. Earliest known date for this pattern is early 1850's. As it happens Dr. John Thomas Scearce's regiment served in the Civil War in Arkansas, as well as other southern states. His wife, Elizabeth went to stay with him while he was at Helena, Arkansas. It may be that stay which inspired this quilt?!