SLHC Masthead «Home

An Antiques Show and Sale Featuring Antique and Vintage Textiles and Americana plus Textile History Lectures and Classes Next Event May 19 & 20 2017

Registration/Program Schedule

The PENN DRY GOODS MARKET is an amazing opportunity to learn from noted experts in textile history. In 2017 we will be offering a superb roster of speakers on a potpourri of topics. Register early as seating is limited.

Paying with Credit Card online? Click the Register button below your desired program to pay online by credit card through PayPal.

Paying with Check or Cash?
Download, complete, and mail in your registration form.
Mail completed registration forms to:
Schwenkfelder Library & Heritage Center
105 Seminary Street
Pennsburg PA 18073
Questions about registration can be directed to Dave Luz, Executive Director or Candace Perry, Curator of Collections.
(215) 679-3103 or

Friday May 19, 2017
9:00 am - 10:00 am

Fruit and Flower Samplers of Maryland and Delaware

Susi B. Slocum, Independent Needlework Scholar

Between 1788 and 1839 an important body of schoolgirl embroidery traces the evolution of the distinctive fruit and flower sampler genre from an 18th century Delaware teacher to its 19th century diffusion and expression by another schoolmistress in Philadelphia, northeast Maryland, and back to northern Delaware.
Orientation Room - Sponsored by Master Supply Line



10:15 am - 11:15 am

Close to Home: Pennsylvania Signature Quilts Reexamined

Debby Cooney, Quilt Researcher and Author

The history of early signature quilts made in southeast Pennsylvania has been enhanced greatly by the vast amounts of material now available digitally and online. This talk will analyze several examples made between 1840 and 1880 that reveal extensive family relationships, ties to community, origins in various religious sects, plus regional design and color preferences.
Orientation Room - Sponsored by Stauffer Glove & Safety

Class is full


11:30 am -12:30 pm

Washed in the Blood: Sacred Symbolism in Moravian Needlework

Johanna Brown, Director of Collections and Curator of Moravian Decorative Arts at Old Salem Museums and Gardens in Winston-Salem, North Carolina

Moravian decorative arts are filled with symbols, both secular and sacred. Needlework pieces made by Moravian women and girls and non-Moravian students at the Salem Girls' Boarding School provide wonderful examples of symbolic expressions of faith. This illustrated lecture will explore the symbolism used on Moravian needlework and related Moravian decorative arts.
Orientation Room - Sponsored by Jeffrey S. Evans and Associates, Inc.



12:45 pm – 1:45 pm

Embroidery: The Language of Art

Linda Eaton, John L. & Marjorie P. McGraw Director of Collections and Senior Curator of Textiles at Winterthur Museum

The definition of the word art has changed over time. From the late Middle Ages it referred to a skill acquired through knowledge and practice as well as the objects produced as a result of that skill, whatever the materials or techniques. In the 18th century a distinction began to be made between fine art, which included only painting, sculpture, and architecture, and applied or decorative art, defined as the design and decoration of more utilitarian objects, including embroidery. Today applied or decorative art is often called craft, another term whose meaning has changed over time. This lecture will discuss the ways that embroidery fits into the changing definitions of art, craft, and design throughout the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries.
Orientation Room - Sponsored by M. Finkel & Daughter, Philadelphia



2:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Ribbons and Caps: The History of Moravian Female Headwear

Paul Peucker, Director and Archivist, Moravian Archives

Moravian women in the 18th century wore distinct caps (a Haube) in combination with a ribbon, signifying their marital status. How the system of the ribbon colors came into existence, is a little known story. Even less known is the fact that Moravian men also wore colored ribbons for a while. Paul Peucker, Moravian archivist in Bethlehem, Pa , will talk about how growing resistance among Moravian women in the early 19th century led to the abolishment of the Haube that came to be seen as an un-American symbol of submission.

Orientation Room - Sponsored by Corinne H. Machmer



3:15 pm– 4:15 pm

Dresden Embroidery on Early Southern White Counterpanes

Laurel Horton, Independent Textile Researcher, Writer, Editor and Fabric Artist

Dresden embroidery is usually worked in a small scale, decorating handkerchiefs, collars and cuffs, but during the late 18th and 19th centuries, a few bold women adapted the technique to embellish their embroidered counterpanes. This paper examines surviving examples from southern states, sharing what we can learn about the lives - and education - of the women who made them.
Orientation Room - Sponsored by Lois McClintock



Saturday May 20, 2017
9:00 am – 10:00 am

A Tale of Two Cities: Needlework Teacher Deborah Hicks Mundall

Cynthia Steinhoff, Sampler Stitcher, Collector and Researcher

Needlework teacher Deborah Hicks Mundall is usually associated with Philadelphia, where she operated a school in the 1830s and 1840s. Recent research shows that Deborah taught in the town of New Castle, Delaware in the early 1820s, before relocating to Philadelphia. Cynthia Steinhoff will discuss Deborah's life and samplers made under her direction in both New Castle and Philadelphia. She will also offer a glimpse of life in early to mid-19th century New Castle, as seen through the eyes of one of Deborah's students who, as an adult, wrote her memoirs of growing up in this bustling small town.
Orientation Room - Sponsored by Harleysville Bank



10:15 am –11:15 am

Introduction to Coverlets

Ron Walter, Textile Collector

A brief discussion of the difference between geometric and figured and fancy coverlets, the various weave structures used and a little discussion on the spread of technology from some of the early loom patents from NY to the mid-western states.
Orientation Room - Sponsored by St. Luke's Quakertown Campus



11:30 am –12:30 pm

Celebrating the Blues: Africa to America

Lori Lee Triplett, Business Manager for Quilt and Textile Collections

Explore Africa's use of indigo and the impact on American Dyeing and fabric. Indigo textiles and quilts from multiple countries and four centuries will be shown.
Orientation Room - Sponsored by Meadowood Senior Living



12:45 pm - 1:45 pm

Britain's Mary Linwood, the Madame Tussaud of Art Needlework

Kathleen Staples, Independent Scholar

Daughter of a Leicester schoolmistress, Mary Linwood (1756-1845) herself was a schoolmistress for much of her working life. But she is best known today for her prodigious output — 64 pictures — of portraits and copies of old masters worked entirely with needle and thread to resemble the technique of painting. Mary displayed these masterpieces in her personal gallery in Leicester Square in London for about forty years, until her death.

Among Mary's students was a young woman, Sarah, who married a Mr. Fulford Brown and immigrated to Baltimore, Maryland. Although there are no extant examples of Sarah Brown's work and only descriptions of the kinds or needlework she offered to teach in that city, some of the artistic output of her tutor, Mary Linwood, has survived. This presentation explores Mary Linwood's life as a needle artist, her influence on several of her students, and the public support — on both sides of the Atlantic — for exhibitions of needlework replications and other literal models such as the waxwork heads created by Marie Tussaud.
Orientation Room - Sponsored by a Schwenkfelder Library & Heritage Center Supporter



2:00 pm -3:00 pm

Going to Town: The Schwenkfelder Townscape Wool Embroideries of the 1840s and 1850s

Candace Perry, Curator of Collections, Schwenkfelder Library & Heritage Center

The Schwenkfelder Townscape wool embroideries have long been somewhat enigmatic and misunderstood. Made in the 1840s and 1850s by older teenaged young women, these needlework pictures are considered folk art masterpieces. But what was the inspiration? Who were the young women who made them, and where were they made? Sometimes collectors want to assign Schwenkfelder provenance to Berlin wool work that’s similar in appearance, but the Townscapes are unique. Schwenkfelder Library & Heritage Center curator Candace Kintzer Perry will answer some questions – and probably pose some new ones – in this illustrated lecture.
Orientation Room - Sponsored by Town and Country Newspaper