County Life, Cultural Objects

Horsehair Lap Robe

Associated Person: Dr. Robert Gamble See
Floyd, Harvestwood, Harris-Cannaday, Dillon's Chapel

Horsehair and wool

  • Colors: brown, tan, rose, and black
  • Dimensions: 58 1/2  x 58 inches

This heavy lap robe was used by Dr. Gamble See as he traveled by buggy throughout Floyd County serving members of his congregations.   It was woven in Maine by Goodall Mills under the “Chase” label.  One side is solid brown while the other has a Victorian pattern with roses and pine trees.

Chase lap robe, Goodall Mills, horsehair, buggy robe
Bio Sketch

The Reverend Dr. Robert Gamble See, Sr., (1878-1978) ministered to  a number of Presbyterian congregations in Floyd County.  He was a missionary in Brazil before coming to the county in 1912.  Harvestwood Church was established in 1916 under his leadership.   He took a leave of absence during the first World War but returned to the county and continued as pastor of the Floyd Presbyterian Church, Harris-Cannaday, and Dillon’s Chapel, in addition to Harvestwood.  He was named Pastor Emeritus in 1949 and continued to serve on a part-time basis until 1978.


Goodall Mills of Sanford, Maine was the first in the United States to manufacture lap robes.  Its founder Thomas Goodall made his fortune selling horse blankets that had straps and buckles to hold the blankets in place.  He started Goodall Mills in 1867 to manufacture lap robes  These were considered luxury items and were prized by those riding in unheated buggies and early automobiles.