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Hooked Rug

Curated Submission
Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada
1920 – 1939
DIMENSIONS in centimetres
33.5 x 45
Materials & techniques
Burlap, cotton, silk; Hooked
Gift of Heather Bryan
Textile Museum of Canada T00.49.1
The Grenfell Mission was established by Sir Wilfred T. Grenfell in the early 20th century in Northern Newfoundland and Labrador. In an effort to improve the economic conditions of the local people, the Mission distributed rug kits with designs of local interest such as fish, sailing ships, icebergs, sea gulls, reindeer, puffins, and dog teams to the women of the coastal areas who created the popular mats using recycled materials, often silk stockings.

This rug illustrates a coastal schooner. Called Labrador Traders by the local community, they were an important link between the people of Labrador and points south. Schooners sailed out of Quebec and Halifax each spring and fall for Harrington Harbour, a community on Quebec’s Gulf of St. Lawrence where seamen would purchase the season’s fish catch from local merchants, and deliver it with other provisions to remote settlements. Labrador Traders ranged in length from 50 to 70 feet, and sported two or three masts. The fore and aft rigging on each mast allowed easy navigation through the small channels of local ports.
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