Rocky Mountain Road

Rocky Mountain Road

Artist: Made by Elizabeth Rogers Manning and Martha Manning
Type: Pieced cotton with stuffed work or trapunto
Year: circa 1860
Size/Dimensions: 100 x 98 in.
Origin: Gala Fund Purchase
Accession Number: 92.5.3

A pattern of many names, this quilt tells the story of westward migration in antebellum America. Known variously as “New York Beauty,” “Crown of Thorns,” “Indian Summer,” and “Rail through the Mountains,” this pattern evolved to become “Rocky Mountain Road” as Americans reached the western states. It is a wonderful example of how pattern names changed to fit the new experiences of antebellum America. Whatever name it was given, this pattern put even the most experienced quilter’s skill and patience to the test. Thousands of tiny triangles were painstakingly cut to needle-fine points, and arranged, piece by piece, to form an overall saw-tooth

design. Bold, contrasting colors give a dramatic effect, as well as the added stuffed work or trapunto vines in the whitework, which acts as a foil to the geometry of the pieced work.

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Rocky Mountain Road