Bruce Jacobson
colorful paisley shawl

Charlotta’s Wedding Shawl, 1875

Give to either Yale or Historic Museum.

Augusta “Guttie” Lindquist (c. 1970).

Augusta Ottila Lindquist, my great aunt “Guttie,” knew that her mother’s shawl was important. She left a note tucked inside the folds asking that it be donated to a museum.

colorful paisley shawl, wool
Anna Charlotta Sundberg’s “Wedding Shawl,” 1875.

The textile curator at Historic New England agrees. The shawl is now among about 50 woolen paisley shawls in the organization’s clothing and accessories collection. It is described as a “long shawl with unusual half-black and half-plain center medallion, elongated, foliated pines filled with floral elements and additional pines/boteh, harlequin gates and fringe in shades of yellow, red, blue, pink, black, and white.” 1

Guttie’s note tells us that the shawl was acquired in January 1875 for the wedding of her mother, on April 30 1875, to Anders Johan (Andersson) Lindquist in Munkatorp, Kungslena, Sweden. This information is reinforced by a note stitched to the back of the shawl: “Charlotta Lindquist /
Skövde / Sverige / 1875.”2

The “wedding shawl” had been passed to my father, to my mother, and then to me. It gave me great pleasure to carry out “Aunt Guttie’s” wish to have an institution care for my great grandmother’s shawl. I donated it to Historic New England, a.k.a the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities, on 26 October 2015 (HNE record 2015.129.1).


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This work by Bruce Jacobson is licensed under Creative Commons 4.0 International License—Attribution-ShareAlike.

Images by Historic New England.

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Notes

  1. Historic New England, “Shawl,” (https://www.historicnewengland.org/ explore/collections-access/gusn/305041/ : accessed 15 May 2019), gusn 305041.
  2. Guttie’s note, written in New Haven around 1970, is now with the shawl at Historic New England. Skövde is a Swedish city in the same region as Velinge, where the newlyweds made their home.

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