The largest blanket manufacturer under one roof in the United States by 1920 was the Beacon Manufacturing Company, of New Bedford, Massachusetts, and later of Swannanoa, North Carolina. Cotton, wool, and blended blankets came off their looms in plain, geometric, and Indian designs by the millions. They were sold at dry goods stores and large orders were filled for American troops in the World Wars. This book displays a large selection of Beacon blankets and color catalog pages from 1917 to 1957, together with original blanket designs, a history of the company, advertisements, and all the Beacon labels. There are special sections on crib blankets, bathrobes using Beacon fabric, related blankets, and Skookum Indian dolls dressed in Beacon remnants. These blankets are diligently searched for by collectors of folk art and textiles because they represent a nearly-lost chapter in textile history and bring a sparkle of color to interior decoration.
Jerry and Kathy Brownstein have collected Beacon blankets for 15 years. Jerry formerly owned The Junk Store (vintage clothing and antiques) in West Los Angeles and manufactured sportswear under the Cactus Club label in the 1980s.