The patterns are more varied than in the previous sample book. There is knitted lace, yes, but also mittens, baby socks, afghans, slippers, even a knitted skirt and an outfit for a boy doll!
A few pages here and there are filled with other notations. There are several grocery lists, but some are more intriguing. A list of money received and spent in early July 1884. Names and addresses, including a source for "indestructible heads for dolls." Also "3 yds - Mrs. Saunders" and similar notes. And then there's this:
Received from Miss B April 19th 3 skeins of yarn
1033 Bedford Avenue Brooklyn
Sent to Miss B one pair of socks and sample on April 23rd 1889
Might the owner of the notebook have made a living with her needlework?
Most tantalizing of all is a page with a floor plan drawing of "862 River St."
Troy NY is mentioned several times in the notebook, including at the head of the received/spent list mentioned above, so that seemed like a good place to start the search for the house. Through the Wonders of Modern Technology (specifically Google Earth), much to my surprise and delight I was able to find the actual building still standing!
It cannot be proved, but I like to think of this as the home of our second anonymous knitter. Here she may have written in this very notebook by gas- or candlelight, and here she may have practiced her art.
And so I propose to embark on a new journey. Going forward I will share in this space the patterns she collected. I will continue to work my own samples of the lace patterns, but I expect many of the larger works such as the afghans will appear without illustration. The adventure continues!
Next time: Directions for a Mitten