On View: Tales from the Civil War Homefront at the New-York Historical Society

As part of the sesquicentennial commemoration of the Civil War (1861-1865) the New-York Historical Society presents Homefront & Battlefield: Quilts & Context in the Civil War.  Textiles played a key role in the politics and culture of the time, and also served as a unique form of personal and artistic expression.

 

Civil War Regimental Banner (Photo: © The New-York Historical Society)

Civil War Regimental Banner (Photo: © The New-York Historical Society)

More than 130 artifacts are featured in Homefront, including intricately designed quilts, regimental silk banners, personal articles of clothing, uniforms and images. Individual heroism and sacrifice are pervasive throughout the works while collectively they represent the struggles of a nation torn apart by war and its eventual reconciliation.

“Homefront & Battlefield demonstrates our signature initiative to frame history with art, telling the story of the Civil War era through abolitionists slogans on silk handkerchiefs, plantation owners’ deals with Rhode Island mills for rough wool to clothe slaves, and needlework stitched by patriotic women on both sides in support of the war effort,” said Louise Mirrer, president and CEO of the NYHS.

Homefront & Battlefield: Quilts & Context in the Civil War is on view at the New-York Historical Society through August 24, 2014.