This beautiful quilt, signed in the center in ink “Barbara Ann Miller/her quilt/1847”, exemplifies the German approach to the English tradition of quiltmaking. Pennsylvania German quilts are typically more boldly colored and patterned than those from other areas of the Northeast. The emphasis on ornate patterning is thought to reflect the influence of the German and central European folk-art traditions that the Pennsylvania Germans carried with them to America. The Mariner’s Compass pattern, which demanded incredibly precise stitching, was one of the most popular sewn by Pennsylvania German women in the nineteenth century.
Purchased by Norman Hascoe/The Hascoe Foundation at the request of the American Wing from Sotheby's auction of Important Americana, January 28-30, 1988, lot 1458. Previous to being auctioned, it was owned by quilt dealers Linda Reuther and Julie Strickler. It entered the collection as a loan, but was made a promised gift in 1990.