Mary Meigs Atwater taught Harriet Tidball weaving. I know that many of you will have books by Harriet on your shelves. But Harriet wasn't always a 'Tidball'... she was a Douglas first.
She eventually took over the publishing of The Shuttle Craft Guild and became well known in her own right. These were the heady days of the weaving revival. Ms. Atwater even traveled to Canada and taught at the Banff Fine Arts and met up with weavers like: Ethel Henderson and Mary Sandin. (Though I'm not sure if she met Mary E. Black of Key to Weaving Fame)
Mary Sandin, Ethel Henderson and Mary Black wrote the Loom Music series of weaving newsletters from 1944 to 1965 and were charter members of The Guild of Canadian Weavers . I'm the current past president of this Canadian national weaving organization. It was formed in 1947 and has just celebrated their 60th anniversary. But more on this group at another time.
So now that you have twigged to the fact I'm a history buff, you can well imagine my joy when I went through the collection of books I bought in Victoria. At some point in the previous owners weaving life, she had acquired old books from the then retiring weavers of the day and so they kept passing these treasures forward.
Among the books were some interesting booklets: 'Natural Dyes of the Navajo' dated 1946 and printed by the United States Government printer; lessons plans on dyeing, spinning and weaving by the BC Teachers Association (yes, these topics used to be taught in our local schools at one time!) Then I found these booklets:
It was a collection of coverlets, in overshot and this was endorsed by the current President's wife, Eleanor Roosevelt. This picture is in the inside cover. Even then, there were concerns about preserving this early weaving history.
Then I found this booklet:
This was a program for a textile fair that at the time of this printing was into it's 7th season in 1945- 1946. In addition to the booklet was a folded sheet which gave the drafts of all coverlets on display. They were encouraging weavers to reproduce them and share.
I have tried to show the size of the folder (above) and then a close up of the drafts.
There was an old brown book at the bottom of the box when I was unpacking them at home. The title is a bit hard to read due to the fancy text but it reads " Dainty Work for Pleasure and Profit"
The book covers literally *everything* do do with womanly handicrafts of the day in 1902, including spinning and weaving. This book is more of a curiosity now and I'm keeping it because of it's venerable old age of 106 years.
My towels have come off the big loom and a new warp is already on....we're back to the present in the next entry.