A rather popular pattern in the 20th century.
BlockBase #943 or 944
Wilene Smith found the earliest published pattern in
American Woman magazine, August 1907.
Mrs. E.C. Turner of Nunda, Illinois asked the editor for a Tumbler Design in 1906. I wondered if she meant the other Tumbler design, which was quite the fashion for charm quilts at the time.
Tumbler charm quilt.
But apparently this is what she wanted. "I saw a quilt pieced in this fashion when I was but a girl, and cannot remember how the bottom of the 'tumbler' was arranged."
A tumbler was what we might call a glass or goblet.
The pattern was often done in the newly fashionable
blues, grays, blacks and reds.
Purchased in Ohio, from the Arizona project & the Quilt Index.
A sampler of indigo blues.
In 1930 pattern designer Eveline Foland drew The Goblet Quilt
for the Kansas City Star.
Carrie Hall was apparently taken with Foland's idea of a floral
pattern in the goblet. Her block is in the Spencer Museum of Art.
In 1934 the Star published the design again, this time with the names Water Glass or
W.C.T.U. block. The names refer to the Women's Christian Temperance Union
that advocated water as the beverage of choice.
Thompson's Spa in Boston
A few years later a reader contributed a variation of the pattern with one less seam.
The Star patterns had an influence as several mid-20th-century examples
We really don't have much evidence that these pieced tumbler quilts had anything to do with
the temperance crusade. The image of an appliqued footed glass is found earlier in quilts.
What's in the glasses?
Water or wine?
Goblet and decanter in applique from a Long Island, New York quilt dated 1857 in
Gay's collection at Sentimental Stitches:
Read Wilene Smith's essay on Temperance Quilts here: