Danish Loom Lervad Cat. 28.E.17

Floor loom made by Anders Lervad & Son, manufacturer of looms in
Denmark starting in about 1897.

From an advertisement:
“Looms made from prime grade, kiln dried Danish Beech with a satin smooth finish to furniture standards.”
This loom was given to Vesterheim by Ruth Myers, daughter of Ruth Nordquist Myers. It was purchased at rummage sale in Lakeside, Berrien County, Michigan in about 1948 for $12 from a woman who made a living weaving rag rugs. Ruth Nordquist Myers was a prominant Chicago weaver/teacher active in the Handweavers Guild of America. These looms, made in the1920s, were 30” wide, counterbalanced with attractively turned and modelled parts including cross bar at the top for the overhead beater. They had four shafts with string heddles. Some models were painted black with incised designs on them. Some had chip carved patterns. Later the looms were made with a countermarch system with two sets of lamms.

Treadles are rear mounted, tied to shafts which hang from four horses which hang from two pulleys.
Central support typical of Danish looms. See E. F. Worst. Weaving with Foot Power Looms. Milwaukee: Bruce, 1918. New York: Dover, 1974. A letter exists which shows that these looms were sold by the weaving instructor, Susanne Sorensen, at Hull House in Chicago. Cost at that time was $100 plus $6.00 for packing.
A quotation from the letter: “Miss Sorensen also imports and Sells Danish Looms and starts Weaving Departments in Schools and other Institutions.”
(1) There are several Lervad Looms in the Chicago area. One is in the collection of the Chicago Art Institute; another, at Joliet Junior College, Joliet, Illinois. There is also one in a private collection in Cincinnati, Ohio.

(1) From the files of Kati Reeder Meek, Alpena, Michigan.