Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Baltimore Album Quilts: 4x5's and Pineapples

Baltimore Album quilt with a pineapple block.
See 4x5-2 below.

For all you filing fans:

Here's a list of the 12 BAQ's in my files that are set 4 blocks by 5 blocks.

The Baltimore standard was a 5 x 5 set. Rectangular quilts with a grid of 4 by 5 or 6 by 7 are unusual.

I found a dozen of these 4x5 rectangular sets

How do I know it's a Baltimore Album Quilt?
Usually it's because somebody else classified it that way. I look for distinctive patterns, the typical floral wreaths, eagles, etc. In the two above and below, the Major Ringgold Memorial with flags is a signature design in Baltimore.

A few of the regularly occurring patterns aren't fancy.
One is this variation of four pineapples.

Here's a blow-up of the block in quilt #4x5-9 above,
The black and white photo.
The block repeats 4 times in that quilt.

A similar version in a 5x5 BAQ that was sold at Northeast Auctions.

It's fairly easy applique.

These pineapple variations are classified in my
Encyclopedia of Applique, page 70, numbered 9.70 to 9.79

9.74 was quite popular in album samplers
and as a repeat block through the end of the 19th century

9.74 has a 4-lobed flower or 4-sided shape in the center.

Click on these blocks and print them out 8" across.
You'll get a pattern to fit an 10" - 12" block.

This late-19th-century version with crossed stems has no number so I am
calling it 9.71.
Wouldn't you say that was a pineapple?

Sometimes they are obviously a pineapple...

Variation of 9.74 with that 4-sided shape in the center.

9.74 from Dr. Lee's BAQ

Maybe this one doesn't qualify since it has no top knot.

The names:
Ruth Finley called it a Pineapple. Elly Sienkiewicz called her version Hospitality

Margaret Matthews version of Elly's Hospitality,
Encyclopedia of Applique #9.77


  1. You gave me many aideas.It seems you read my thoughts. I just finished 16 paperpiecing blocks flowers and didn´t decide how to layout them, with your post I found many ideas.!!

    I will post about them next week.

  2. Last week I went to the Eye on Elegance exhibit at the DAR Museum. On display are early quilts from Maryland and Virginia. They were amazing. If you are near DC, don't miss this exhibit!