In September, 1971, the ROM opened the landmark exhibition Keep Me Warm One Night, a kaleidoscopic display of over 500 pieces of Canadian handweaving. It was the culmination of decades of pioneering research and collecting by the ROM curatorial powerhouse duo ‘Burnham and Burnham’, aka Dorothy K. Burnham and Harold B. Burnham.
To kick off the one-year count down to the ROM’s conference, Cloth Cultures (November 10-12, 2017), which will commemorate Dorothy Burnham’s many legacies, and to mark Canada’s approaching 2017 Sesquicentennial, we will be posting bi-weekly excerpts from Dorothy’s journal of Keep Me Warm One Night. We hope you will enjoy this unofficial glimpse into the bygone days of the ROM, and into the pioneering days of textile studies.
Thursday, August 5th
Some time ago Harold & John tied a set of the proper kind of knitted, clasped heddles for the Quebec loom. They are right and look well but very fussy to thread - a two person job and a slow one. It's getting done bit by bit.
As there is no hope of getting into Exhibition Hall for some days yet & we haven't a corner in the Department to sort and lay things out we borrowed some space in one of the closed Chinese galleries, trucked all the overshot coverlets up there and worked over them making plans for the order of hanging. It was terribly hot & life was further complicated by the elevator giving out. I was stuck for some time in it & from then on we had to use the frieght elevator & carry everything down the stairs to it.
John & Harold threading the Quebec loom.
Charlotte puts the oldest overshot coverlet into condition for showing.