Pennsylvania Dutch Hope Chests

Pennsylvania Dutch Hope Chests

The Dower Chest, better-known as a Hope Chest or Blanket Chest in present time, is described by the Pennsylvania Dutch as Ausschteier Kischt. This furniture piece is considered the most cherished and a lot of representative associated with the Germanic Immigrants who found inhabit Pennsylvania during belated seventeenth, eighteenth and 19th Centuries. Girls between the ages of eight to ten were given Hope Chests inscribed with regards to brands and in most cases the time of presentation. This storage upper body was filled up with items for your home your woman made, was handed or purchased in expectation of her future relationship. On her big day, this entirely filled Hope Chest was proudly put into the “marriage truck” you need to take to the woman new house. Products would have included covers, bedding, child garments, quilts plus some family members heirlooms.

The style designs, dimensions and building kinds vary among these Hope Chests which ultimately shows that craftsmen failed to copy one anothers work. The base design modifications from Dower Chest to Dower Chest with a big variety of bracket legs, rounded basketball legs or no feet whatsoever. Some Hope Chests had several compartments over the base, while others had none. Numerous Blanket Chests had inlay designs or special painted designs.

The painted styles on some of these Hope Chests are extremely fancy which includes allowed historians to be able to classify them by area and recognize specific craftsmen. These Dower Chest designs included the application of inlaid leaf and rose motifs, unicorns, hearts, birds, hex styles to defend against wicked spirits, rose styles mainly of roses or tulips, the name of the girl receiving the Hope Chest additionally the date that Hope Chest was presented.

Both typical elements of these Hope Chests would be the top finishing lid and dark timber staining or paint. Dark coloring was essential for the look elements to face  on, specifically for the inlaid themes. Breathtaking hardwoods of Walnut, Oak and Eastern Pine were mainly used when you look at the building of the finely crafted Blanket Chests in this early time frame.

These Early American Hope Chests are not made with cedar inside. Cedar linings and bottoms are the improvements of current day craftsmen with their Blanket Chests. That is a well liked function among purchasers since cedar removes insect pests and releases a delightful aroma every time the cover is exposed. This fresh odor is refreshed simply by roughing the cedar with small grit sandpaper.

And even though culture in a lot of regions has discontinued the tradition of giving Dower Chests to their young daughters, beautifully built Hope Chests are loving provided as marriage gift suggestions or as a unique gift.

Charity Crouch