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Pieced Patchwork Quilt

Pieced Patchwork Quilt, after 1892
American; Made by Madam Schumann-Heink (1881-1936)
Silk, sateen, ribbon and cotton; 68 x 59.5 in.
Gift of Mrs. Dorothy F. Sorensen


This visually outstanding quilt in a Chinese Coins or Roman Stripe pattern was hand pieced together by Madam Schumann-Heink. Eight strips of ribbon and colored silks are separated by strips of black silk, embroidered with feather and double-feather stitches done in yellow and orange to enhance the black borders. In addition the quilt is bordered by folded embellished triangles and is backed by gold silk. Many of the fabrics were worn by Madam Schumann-Heink during the course of her career as a concert artist. Born near Prague, she made her American debut in Chicago in 1898, and appeared one year later at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York City. Considered by critics to be the greatest contralto of her time, with a repertoire of over 150 roles, she made many early phonograph records and one Hollywood movie in 1936, “Here’s to Romance.” She retired to La Jolla in 1913. Some of the printed ribbons display interesting historical details including one commemorating “National Public School Celebration, Columbus Day, October 21st 1492-1892.”

All images and text under copyright. Please contact Collection Department for permission to use. Information subject to change with further research.
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