18th Century Tow Cloth and Other Early Antiques

I did a lot of antiquing over the weekend and came home with some great things. One of the things I bought was a wonderful, pills hard to find, square of 18th century tow cloth with a lovely pattern. It is in pristine condition, never used. It’s a nice square piece, perfect to use on the middle of  a table. You might not know what tow cloth is, so let me try to explain.

Tow is the short fibers left over after combing or “hackling” the longer flax fibers called “line”. Flax is a plant that was dried an pulled through a hatchel, like the one below.

These fibers were then made into tow cloth, which, in the 18th century,  was used to clean gun barrels, and when they were finished, it was put into their fire bag and used for lighting fires. Tow was a inexpensive material and was also used to make work clothes and work frocks.

I have a wonderful punched tin lantern dated 1809 on the handle. A early 19th century Pennsylvania German wall box with a heart cutout. A wonderful out of round 18th century wood bowl, and much more. I am working hard taking photos and describing everything, so be sure to look for new items this week.

I also have a few Mary Shooner redware animals, like this rabbit, a whale, cat, doves and a elephant.

Thank you so much for stopping by and reading my blog.

Sending blessings


8 Responses to “18th Century Tow Cloth and Other Early Antiques”

  1. tj Says:

    …[singing] “An-ti-ci-pa-tion”, “An-ti-ci-pa-a-tion”, “It’s making me wait”…I’m singing while waiting for your new items to appear. hee,hee Just be glad you can’t hear me singing! [giggle] :o )

    …I did not know that about Tow Cloth. That is so interesting and it once again shows how resourceful our ancestors were too, nothing went to waste. I do love the look of it too.

    …And oh, that bowl! [swoons] Same goes for that precious lil’ Mary Schooner redware rabbit too! :o )

    …Thank you for today’s lesson! :o )

    …Blessings to you Miss Carole.

  2. carolemurals Says:

    Hi tj. I am glad you found this post interesting. I actually did not know what tow cloth was, and researched it before posting this information.
    Blessing to you too.

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