Market Lavington Museum

A rag rug


In our post A permanent display, we caught a glimpse of the corner of a rug on Market Lavington Museum floor, in front of the range. Here is the whole rug.

Hearth rugs were often put on the floor in front of a fireplace in the days before fitted carpets and central heating. They protected any larger carpet underneath from stray sparks when the fire was being poked. The kitchen floor in the old school cottage, which is now our museum, is made of brick. A rug by the range would have provided a bit of warmth for the feet of lady of the house.

We are told that our rug was made to a north country design, but was used in Market Lavington before making its way to the museum.

Our rug is hessian backed, but the backing is no longer sewn in place at one corner, allowing us to see the underside, where the rags are held in place with fawn wool. People still made rag rugs in the 1950s, but we doubt that many are made nowadays.