Quilt: Pieced Civil War Era (American, 1862)

By Catherine Fisher, Muskingum, Adams County, Ohio. Printed cotton plain weave, pieced and quilted. Mary S. and Edward J. Holmes Fund, Frank B. Bemis Fund, Elizabeth M. and John F. Paramino Fund in memory of John F. Paramino, Boston Sculptor, Helen B. Sweeney Fund, Textile Income Purchase Fund, Mary L. Smith Fund, Joyce Arnold Rusoff Fund, and Alice J. Morse Fund (2013.74). Photograph © Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

My immersion in a quilt project continues to inspire curiosity about the many wonderful quilts in our collection. I chose to feature this one because the soft, muted colors call to mind the burgeoning spring blossoms and foliage that we are so grateful to see as spring takes hold in the Northeast!

The pattern of this quilt is called “Wild Goose Chase,” named after the wedge-shaped triangles inspired by the seasonal migrations of geese. This pattern lends itself to numerous variations, and quilt makers were able to express their artistic abilities and creativity in the way they arranged the triangles and by the color palettes they chose. This quilt, made by Catherine Fisher in Ohio during the Civil War era, is another fine example that the MFA acquired from the Pilgrim/Roy Collection.

Click for description and collection data on mfa.org

Objects in Brief is a randomized showcase of the MFA, Boston’s encyclopedic Textile and Fashion Arts collections. A featured object is indicative of the author’s curiosity and chosen so she may learn about its material and structural properties, function, history, and greater story. These “quick studies” have led to more in-depth explorations posted in A Closer Look.