Quilt No.861AG - Annette Gero

Annette Gero
Owner: 
Annette Gero
Location: 
NSW Sydney
Maker
Maker: 
Sarah Wall
Made in
AUSTRALIA?
Date: 
pre 1850
Description: 
Hexagon quilt made from dimity, chintzes and dress material cottons. It is hand pieced over papers and hand quilted. The quilt is signed 'Sarah Wall Allestry 1811'.
2280 x 2200mm
History: 

This quilt is attributed to Sarah Litherland, later Wall. It is now owned by Julie Silber of 'The Quilt Complex', Oakland, California and is on long term loan to Annette Gero.

Story: 

"A Sarah Litherland was sentenced at Chester on 25 April 1797 to seven years transportation and arrived in NSW in 1801 aboard the Earl Cornwallis. She married a James Wall at St. John's Parramatta (Church of England) on 9 February 1807. James Wall was a resident of Hawkesbury. However, she eloped from him in 1809. Reported in the Sydney Gazette, 4th June, 1809, James Wall of Richmond Hill placed a notice cautioning the public against giving credit on his account to his wife Sarah Wall (formerly Litherland) as she had eloped from him and he would not be responsible for any debt she may contract.
The quilt is dated 1811. There is always the question of how she could afford the fabrics of chintzes and dimities in her quilt although they were readily obtainable in Sydney. Advertisements in the Sydney Gazette from 1803-1814 mention many sales and auctions of fabrics such as 'English cottons and dimity, palampores, colour cambric and English chintz', the kind of fabrics used in Sarah's quilt. However, was the quilt really made in Sydney? Allestry was a small town in the midlands of England at that time. Although a Sarah Wall lived in Sydney in 1811, we do not know whether this 'Sarah Wall' made the quilt. Unless there are descendants of the Richmond Hill Sarah Wall who have evidence that it was she who made the quilt we shall, unfortunately, never be able to definitely attribute this social history to the quilt."
[Annette Gero. Research by the Historic Houses Trust of NSW. Walsh, N., Index of References to Furniture and Furnishings in Advertisements in the Sydney Gazette 1803-1824, Historic Houses Trust of NSW, 1997]

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