A Very Unusual Linen Tablecloth Hand-Embroidered with Signatures
Fine White Linen With Coloured Silk Threads
Dated "Summer 1898" (Lower Right)
99 cm x 99 cm
A very unusual hand-embroidered fine linen tablecloth bearing over 100 facsimile signatures, mostly those of women.
The names are possibly those of American travellers and included amongst their number is the signature of Kathleen Hussey Watson (a founder member of the Women’s Press Club Pittsburgh). Two of the embroidered signatures are those of Italians, being those of the Captain and First Officer of the Steamship "Manilla" (which was based in Genoa and belonged to the 'Navigazione Generale Italiana Line'). This ship sailed between Genoa and Palermo, the U.S.A. and the Far East. The exact reason for this group of names is unknown but we can speculate that they were travelling together to Europe on board the SS Manilla. There are several members of the same family name ("Stewart"/"Southwell") which may explain the reason for the central gothic letter "S".