Skip to main content Smithsonian Institution

Catalog Data

H. R. Mallinson & Co. Inc.  Search this
Physical Description:
silk (overall material)
gray-blue ground (overall color)
orange (overall color)
dark blue (overall color)
white (overall color)
red (overall color)
pink (overall color)
plain weave; cylinder-printed (overall production method/technique)
overall: 36 in x 35 1/2 in; 91.44 cm x 90.17 cm
Object Name:
Fabric Length
Place made:
United States: New York, New York City
Date made:
Length of printed "Vagabond Crepe" (Mallinson trade name). Weft ribbed, crepe fabric woven with silk warp and doupion weft. Printed allover pattern "Betsy Ross-Liberty Bell," one of the "Early American" series. Jagged, rayed "Art Deco" or "Jazz Age" depiction of the Liberty Bell; Thirteen stars with coats of arms in them of the 13 original states; Washington inspecting Betsy Ross's flag; and Independence Hall. Colorway: Light blue ground (fading out in sections to pinkish tone) White reserves, print in black, coral, pink, red. Selvage width; selvage inscription. Judging from drawings by free-lance textile designer Walter Mitschke in the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts - Boston, Mitschke designed this print and several others in the Early American series.
Mallinson's 1929 "Early American" series of printed dress silks was based on historical events and figures that were perceived at the time to consitute a shared American story. It was the last of the company's line of designs based on American themes in which each design was printed in at least seven colors, in several colorways, on three or four different ground cloths. The stock market crash and economic depression that followed made the investment in this kind of design unprofitable.
Currently not on view
Credit Line:
Gift of H.R. Mallinson & Co., Inc.
ID Number:
Accession number:
Catalog number:
See more items in:
Home and Community Life: Textiles
American Silks
American Silk Industry
Migel-Mallinson Silks
Mallinson's Early American
Data Source:
National Museum of American History