Charlotte Treadwin (née Dobbs) was born near Dulverton, Exmoor. As a young girl she was apprenticed to a dressmaker and later learned to make lace.
Her great skill as a lace maker earned her a Royal warrant in 1848 – numerous royal commissions and prize medals followed. She exhibited at the Great Exhibition of 1851 and the International Exhibition of 1862.
Charlotte married a watchmaker called John Treadwin in 1850, and the couple lived at Cathedral Yard in Exeter. Mrs Treadwin had established her Exeter ‘Manufactory’ nearby, where a team of skilled workers produced fine bobbin and needle laces.
Examples of her own work and pieces from the collection she gathered throughout her life were organised into an album by Ellen Herbert, her successor in business. While some samples were produced at Charlotte Treadwin’s manufactory, others are much earlier pieces dating to the 16th and 17th centuries.
The album was bequeathed to RAMM in memory of Mrs Treadwin on her death in 1929.