Object Record

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Object ID 1874.004 a
Object Name Cover, Chair Seat
Collection Textiles
Credit line Gift of Mr. James Trimble
Year Range from 1750
Year Range to 1800
Made Elizabeth Maxwell Job (?)
Description Hand-stitched chair cushion used on a chair that originally belonged to Elizabeth Foe Maxwell (1659 - circa 1720), sister of English author, Daniel Defoe (1660-1731). The cover is made from red and (once) white wool in an eight-pointed star design. The backing is made from brown cotton with a repeating pattern of small darker and lighter brown dots. The outer cover is sewn over a blue and white striped mattress cover canvas cushion. The whole cushion was secured to the chair with two red wool twill weave ties at the back and two loop cords at the front. The cushion was made later than the original chair it accompanied.
Dimensions H-1.75 W-16 D-13.75 inches
Dimension Details Dimensions of cushion; remaining back tie is 14 1/2" long; front loop ties are 12 1/2" long
Owned Maxwell, Job, & Trimble families
Provenance This cushion originally accompanied a chair that came from the Maxwell family home in London, England, where it was said to have been used by English author, Daniel Defoe, when he stayed there. After his sister's death, Daniel Defoe sent several furniture items from the home of his deceased sister, Elizabeth Foe Maxwell, to her daughter, Elizabeth Maxwell Job (1700-1782), who had emigrated to Maryland in 1718/19. The chair that this cushion came from descended to her son Archibald and then grand-daughter, Sarah Job Trimble, who gave it to her son, Joseph Trimble (c. 1791-1873). When Joseph died, his brother James donated the chair to DHS through George and A.A. Capelle, Wilmington hardware merchants with whom he had done business.

The chair was transferred to Winterhur Museum in 1986 but DHS retained this cushion from it.
Subjects Textiles
Search Terms Daniel Defoe
Chair Covers
Seat Covers
Elizabeth Maxwell Job
Material Wool cover; canvas cushion
Place of Origin Calvert, Maryland