The Marshfield Center for Textile Research is the long awaited venture of Kate Smith's 40 year career in the field of historic textiles. Situated in the hills of Vermont and off the beaten track, it is has been the home of the Marshfield School of Weaving since 1979 and Eaton Hill Textiles/ Lone Rock Farm since 1989. Between these two properties, which are less then a mile apart, are housed the largest collection of working 4 post barn frame looms in the country. This is also where a large portion of the spinning wheel collection and other related equipment from the American Textile History Museum arrived in 2016. Besides these wonderful artifacts there is the combined knowledge of Norman Kennedy and Kate Smith - both of whom have devoted their lives to the study and practice of 18 & 19th c. weaving, spinning, dyeing and fabric finishing techniques. The Center now offers the opportunity for other students of historic textile technology to come and use the resources housed in the two locations on whatever project takes their fancy!
STUDIO & EQUIPMENT
The studio at the Marshfield School of Weaving houses over 12 working 18th & 19th c. barn frame looms along with all of the warping, loom dressing and related textile tools. The ATHM spinning wheel collection along with an archival cabinet of distaffs, reeds, shuttles, etc is housed at Eaton Hill Textile Works across the road from the school.
LIBRARY & TEXTILE COLLECTION
Between the library of Kate Smith and Eaton Hill Textile Works we now have additional material from the American Textile History Museum. We received many period dye books as well as numerous articles on all manner of textile subjects from the museum archives.
Eaton Hill also has a large collection of textiles from the 19th c. including coverlets, whole cloth quilts, linens and woolen blankets. As part of a student research project we hope to have our library added to the online data base.
WHO WE ARE
TEACHERS & STAFF
Kate Smith came to study with Norman in 1979 and has devoted her whole working life to the study and execution of historic textiles. Her foray into textile research started with a desire to reproduce embossed fabrics from the 18th c. and after 10 years of trial and error experimentation, Eaton Hill Textile Works now is one of the only producers of this type of fabric in the US.
Along with Kate, many of her former students have vast knowledge and experience to share and are working on research projects of their own.
And last but not least, is Norman Kennedy who is a veritable goldmine of stories, photographs and hands on experience.