Date of Award
Master of Science in Textiles, Fashion Merchandising and Design
Textiles, Fashion Merchandising and Design
Almost 200 years after their creation, quilts in the Baltimore Album style continue to fascinate scholars and collectors. They encompass the most intricate of appliqué designs accomplished with sophisticated skills. Their designers remain little-known. A previously unresearched and unfinished Baltimore Album Quilt top is described and analyzed. It is compared to three other historic Baltimore Album Quilts from museum collections, all inscribed and dated between 1845 and 1850, all originating from northern Baltimore County, Maryland, and all interrelated through designs or inscriptions.
Research questions address the maker(s) of the top, the identity and circumstances of the intended recipient, and the relationships among the persons whose names are inscribed. Techniques and resources include direct visualization and photography, as well as databases of digitized vital records, censuses, and newspapers. Originals and photocopies of archived family records were consulted.
Historical analysis includes brief chronicles of two families, the Orricks and the Gorsuches, both among the earliest landowners of the Maryland Colony. The roles of both families’ members in the story of the study quilt are discussed.
Finally, a narrative is presented to explain the intention of the makers and the quilt top’s journey from Maryland to the American Midwest.
Day, Susan E., "HISTORICAL AND TECHNICAL ANALYSIS OF A BALTIMORE ALBUM QUILT TOP" (2023). Open Access Master's Theses. Paper 2365.
Available for download on Friday, September 05, 2025