Quilt of the Month


May 2005

May 2005

Mexican Rose
Maker, location unknown
Circa 1850-1870
93.5" x 75.5"
IQSC 1997.007.0484
Ardis and Robert James Collection of Antique and Contemporary Quilts
Partisan Pieces: Quilts of Political and Patriotic Persuasion

Numerous Mexican Rose quilts were made in the United States between 1850 and 1870, leading to speculation that the pattern name relates to a prominent national event of its time - the war between the U.S. and Mexico (1846-1848). When Texas declared its independence from Mexico and was annexed by the United States, Mexico disputed the United States' right to territory in present day New Mexico and California. After numerous skirmishes, Mexico sued for peace and sold the northern half of its country to the United States for $15 million.

Perhaps the woman who made this quilt was an admirer of the heroes of the war or had a family member who fought in the war. Though we cannot know for certain, we find, in this quilt, a reminder of the important events of the day as well as a reminder of the intimate events of the maker's life.