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History of the United States Rug

Life Magazines' Photo archive has some incredible pictures and we found this one while looking through. The rug pictured below is a history lesson in the United States. Starting at the top there is a portrait of Lincoln on the left and a portrait of Robert E. Lee on the right. At the time of the Civil War, Lincoln was President and Lee was the General of the Confederate Army. The flag on the left is the current US Flag while the flag under Lee was one of the First National Flag, used by the Confederates. In the middle of the rug is the first President of the United States, George Washington.

To the left of Washington is a Native American Indian, while on the right there is a Pilgrim. Underneath Washington is a seal of the United States, with a bald eagle on top of a badge with the American Flag inside of it. On the bottom left is a portrait of the Statue of Liberty, and on the right is a picture of the Capital Building.

Overall this rug is very interesting as it shows the European and American influence on Oriental Rug design in imports from Persia. We don't know where this rug is now, but it would definitely fit in the White House with all of its previous rugs, and is a long way from this Obama rug. If you're looking for a more modern history, be sure to check out this "Kennedy Tabriz" we came across that sold for $375 on April 19th, 2009 at a SUSANIN'S auction.

US History Rug
U.S. History Rug

Close up of Lincoln, Washington and the flags
Close up of Lincoln, Washington and the flags

The photograph above is from 1941 and must be of fairly high knot density to execute this type of design.  Although many Persian pictorial rugs may feature figures important figures in Persian historyoriental rugs depicting influential western leaders or European influence are not as uncommon as one may expect.  In fact, on our trip to Sotheby's November 25, 2008 we spotted a fairly early example from the mid 1800's (probably one of the earlier rugs to have significant European influence) from Kerman. The rug was woven in the workshop of Kermani signed and dated 1865. The photos below, although not presidential, still shows the heavy European influence in weavings made in and around the mid 1800's.

Lavar Kerman from 1865 which sold for $5938 with a 25% buyer premium
Lavar Kerman from 1865 which sold for $5938 with a 25% buyer premium

Lavar Kerman Close up
Close up of Lavar Kerman


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