Kay Yeomans, Upper Saddle River Historical Society
One of the most meaningful donations to Upper Saddle River’s Hopper-Goetschius House Museum came from John W. Hopper, a direct descendant of the John A. Hopper who lived in the museum’s Dutch sandstone house in 1780. After talking with his family, John gifted the museum a blue and white Jacquard coverlet, an item so treasured it had been handed down in his family through wills.
It is a signed David D. Haring coverlet — made for Henrietta Haring and dated 1833 — a wonderful acquisition just because it is a Haring coverlet, prized by collectors. David D. Haring, b.1800 in Tappan, is the most well known of Bergen County’s Jacquard weavers. He signed and dated many of his coverlets so his work can be identified and studied.
Left: John A. Hopper and the Henrietta Haring coverlet
The corner blocks of the Henrietta Haring coverlet feature Haring’s trademark four-leaf rose with his name alongside, David D. Haring, Weaver. He sometimes used the word Tappan instead of weaver. He lived on Tappan Road in Harrington Township in the town that came to be known as Norwood, New Jersey. His coverlets are mostly blue wool and natural cotton. A smaller number are two shades of blue wool. He is said to have dyed the wool himself. Henrietta’s coverlet is a pattern he used on several coverlets in that year. It has eagles for patriotism and roosters for religion.* As you can see in the photo of the coverlet’s side panel, there are doves and hearts, so the coverlet represented affection as well.
The Henrietta Haring coverlet is even more important to us, however, because of the genealogy it represents — the begets and begats of Bergen and Rockland County marriages — that illustrate how tied together the early families were and how much they valued the Haring coverlets. John W. Hopper was willed the coverlet by his father, John Jacob Hopper. In turn, (and this part gets tricky) John Jacob had been willed the coverlet by his mother’s sister, Hannah Jane (Jennie) Hopper, who did not have children. John Jacob’s mother was Jennie’s younger sister, Frances Etta Hopper, who married twice — both times to a Hopper. John Jacob was the son of Etta’s second husband, Herman Van Riper Hopper.
Hannah Jane (Jennie) Hopper was born in 1851 in the Nicausie Hopper 18th century sandstone house on Old Stone Church Road in Upper Saddle River. Nicausie Hopper, born in 1760, was the youngest son of the John A. Hopper who lived in our museum house. Jennie was the daughter of Nicausie’s grandson, John Andrew Hopper (1828-1911), and Maria Tallman. John A. and Maria are pictured below in front of their home with Earl Sutton holding the two horses. Jennie’s nephew, John Jacob, spent part of his youth in the old homestead. He absorbed the history of his family from his grandfather John A. and shared those stories with his son, John W. Hopper.
The Nicausie-Hopper Home, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey
Next Week: How did Henrietta Haring’s coverlet find its way to the Hopper family?
* Wikipedia: The rooster was a symbol of Peter’s three denials of Christ before the cock crowed and his subsequent repentance. The Dutch Reformed Churches had weathervanes depicting a rooster.
2. Upper Saddle River Historical Society archives
3. Maria Pratt Hopper, The Hopper Family Genealogy, 2005, p. 140