Jul 7, 2011

Revisiting Vermont Quilt Festival Part 2

We will continue our walk thru VQF's special exhibits today with more of the antique quilt exhibit featuring the collection of the Vermont Historical Society:

I was mesmerized by quite a few of the quilts chosen for this special exhibit, but this one in particular had me going back for a second and third look. I have of late toyed with the idea of making a hexagon "something". I'm not sure I would have the patience to make a full sized quilt, but really do love the idea of one. Then came this:

This hexagon quilt is made of silk and was made by Bathsheba Howard Philips of Newfane, VT. It is dated 1837 and marked with her initials. The historical information given goes on to mention that although "the maker did marry in 1837, but she may have made this as an anniversary quilt at a later date since silk would have been a rare material for a Vermont quilt sewn before 1875. Others say it is possible that it dates to 1837 since this pattern was popular in the late 1830's and the maker used her maiden name initials".

Take a closer look:

Closer still:

I just love it, and think that using this as a jumping off point, I could indeed make that hexagon quilt I've been thinking about. No silk here, however! Just a good cotton fabric- most likely from my scrap basket??

The original above was donated to the Historical Society by Alice Swingle in 1962. Any thoughts on when it might actually been crafted??

This cotton quilt in the Robbing Peter to Pay Paul (or Wheel and Cushion) pattern was made by Jennie S. Farwell, teacher and preceptress at the Montpelier Seminary from 1872 to 1878. She sewed this quilt and had community members sign it to raise $100 for a scholarship fund. It was on loan by Vermont College. Below is a close up of signatures (quite faded, but still visible).

This cotton Chintz Puss in the Corner or Nine Patch Variation pattern was made by a member of the Douglas Family of Chelsea, Vt. in about 1850. It was donated to the society by Anne D. Waterson in 1973.

Dating from the 1900's, this cotton baby quilt in a star pattern was donated by John Coolidge in 1982.

There were also several Carolina Lily pattern quilts hanging together in the exhibit. These quilts were made by women in the same family. We chuckled that each was more beautiful than the other...competition perhaps?? I thought I had photos of them, but alas, they are not showing up in my catalog of photographs. However, this stunner may bring me back into good graces:

This Carolina Lilly or Peony pattern was made by Catherine Bolster of Barre, VT in 1863. The center block is embroidered, "Barre, Vermont/1863/Catherine Bolster/Born November 28, 1806." It was a gift of Beverly Jones in 2005.

Made by Fidelia Reed Bolster of Barre, VT in about 1845, this cotton Lost Ship pattern was a museum purchase (with assistance of the Vermont Quilt Festival, Inc.) in 2000. I love the simplicity of the green and white.

Another crowd pleaser was this cotton quilt in the Grandmother's Flower Garden pattern. It was made by Mrs. Frances Slater Russo in 1932 and was a museum purchase (2002).

Previously owned by the Allen family of Barnard, Vt. this Lattice Block quilt was purchased by the museum in 2002. It has a Picket Fence border.

It was constructed with scrap fabrics dating from the 1820's to 1880's. I find it looks amazingly contemporary.

This cotton Autograph quilt was signed primarily by families from the Upper Connecticut River Valley towns of Stafford, Thetford, and Pompanoosuc, VT. It dates from the 1870's and was donated in 2002 by Peter Mallary. The signatures have faded quite a bit:

Signed and dated "Mattie,September 11, 1879" this red and white cotton Carpenter's Square pattern was made my Martha (Mattie) Galusha of Shaftsbury, Vt. the year before she married Horatio Simmons of Bennington. It was donated by Harriet Simmons Williams in 2004.

This quilt top became one of my favorites because I could relate with its maker...it was a work in progress. However it has other interesting information...this Double 4-Patch Variation was stitched by Henry Walker of Weston, VT. in about 1920. Mr. Walker was bed-ridden and was taught to hand-piece to help pass the time! Donated by Bev Roberts in 2008.

Martha (Mattie) Galusha Simmons (see above Carpenter's Square quilt) also stitched this Sunflower or Sunburst pattern. It was made in about 1880 and Martha was now married and living in Bennington, VT. Donated to museum by Harriet Simmons Williams in 2010.

Dating to the Civil War (1863) this cotton quilt contains quotes from the Bible. the back is signed: "Made by Mrs. L.B. Fairbanks of Brandon VT." It is stamped on reverse, "Brandon/Soldiers Aid Society" and "U.S. Sanitary Commission". It was donated by the York County (PA) Historical Society in memory of Sophia Wilfong (1987).

Below are some beautiful whole cloth quilts from the exhibit. I hope I have documented them properly (my photo numbers from my camera card did not correspond to the upload numbers when put on the computer! That will teach me to delete the photos from my camera card prematurely). I am also going to post a photo of a spectacular Log Cabin quilt and hope that the lack of complete documentation does not cause a lot of dismay.

I believe this whole-cloth quilt was made from copper and block printed fabrics from England and France. If I am correct, it was owned by the Martin Family of Plainfield, Vt. and dates from about 1830. Gift of Sylvia J. and Robert Dole. 2004.

Whole-cloth glazed (washed off) printed cotton quilt. Printed peacock design from the mid-nineteenth century. Donated by Helen Tracy. 1991.

White Whole-cloth from 1840's. (Possibly made by Fidelia Bolster Smith)

and to end our walk thru just some of the collection mounted by the Vermont Historical Society is this wonderful Log Cabin:

For more information on the quilts of Vermont, one can read about them in the book Plain and Fancy: Vermont's People and Their Quilts.

In my next post, I will take you through the second Gallery Talk QB and I attended. Life's Work: The Quilts of Marjorie Haight Lydecker and Her Students.
I have to say up front, meeting Mrs. Lydecker, some of her students and seeing their quilts was one of the highlights of this year's festival for me. The influence of a quilt teacher is something like no other and I so wish I could have had a chance to sit and learn from her. Seeing these quilts sent QB and I on a quest to find a way to attend a class with either Jenna Kimball or head to the Applique Academy (big wish!) to soak in the work of Elly Sienkiewicz!

Post Script- found this fun video showing some of the preparations for hanging the exhibit. See it here.
To Be Continued.....


Cheryl said...

Thanks for sharing the pictures, but most of all, all the info with them. Can't wait to see and peruse the next edition.

Julie Fukuda said...

That ws well worth the trip. Those are stunning quilts. Thanks for sharing.

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