Accession Number
A white, square, damask, linen napkin. The damask pattern is of dahlias with a heavy boarder of the flowers separated from the more sparsely decorated middle with a ribbon design.
This napkin is part of a set of 10 and is suitable for display in Craigdarroch’s Dunsmuir-era interiors and it was collected for the Primary Collection for that reason.


History of Use
This group of textiles originally belonged to Fanny Baird (nee May) of Honolulu. Born sometime in the 1850s in Newark on Trent, Nottinghamshire, she was brought to Honolulu with her brother, Tom May, by her uncle, Henry May, who along with business partner Sam Savage ran a successful grocery business specializing in English imports. When Henry May died in 1884 he left the business and an estate of $100 000 to his nephew Tom. Tom built a large house at the corner of Pensacola and Lunalilo Streets in Honolulu, where he lived until his death in 1910.  Fanny and her husband, William Baird lived in a smaller house on the Pensacola side of the property. These linens would have been purchased by Fanny while at this home. After Fanny’s death, they were passed to Tom’s daughter Vera. Her brother, Gerald Henderson May, moved to Vancouver Island after the First World War, a city he’d travelled through frequently as a child while travelling to England for schooling. He built the house Dunmora on the Saanich Peninsula. The textiles were passed to his family after Vera’s death and remained with his daughter until their donation to Craigdarroch Castle.
52 x 48.5 cm
Fabric, linen

Related Objects

napkin, 2020.011.004.001 (is related to)