QUILTS & FABRIC: PAST & PRESENT


Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Alabama Quilts

Seven Sisters variation (Egyptian Design) 
Pike County, Alabama

I stumbled across a picture file of Alabama quilts in the
Alabama Decorative Arts Survey in the online files of the Birmingham Public Library.

I fixed up the photos a little to show you some of my favorites.

Louiza Gibson Simmons

Late-19th century to early-20th century quilts,
solid colors, prone to fading to tan or gray.

Allie & Adar Roling. Family attributes it to 1890.

Is this the oldest Double Wedding Ring Quilt?
Or just one of the best?
"Directed by the Birmingham Museum of Art and begun in 1985, the Alabama Decorative Arts Survey was a nine-year search throughout the state, in both private and public collections for ceramics, quilts, coverlets, furniture, paintings, photographs, metals, textiles, and grave markers that were made in nineteenth and early twentieth centuries Alabama. The project identified thousands of objects, created survey sheets on objects and photographed objects. The survey sheets record the type of object, describe the object and its condition, list the maker and year of creation if known, and list the location of the object.
Nannie Leath Blackburn
"Highlighting objects from the Survey, the Birmingham Museum of Art created the exhibition “Made in Alabama: A State Legacy,” which opened at BMA in 1994 and then traveled to the Huntsville Museum of Art, the Mobile Museum of Art, and the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts. An accompanying catalog, also entitled Made in Alabama was published."
Rebecca Heard Griffin

Mitchell Family
Seems like a perfect definition of a type of late-19th-century Southern quilt.
Complex pieced design, solid color with fabrics that fade, blocks set in a square grid,
wide sashing, fan quilting.
But lest you think those Mitchells were conventional, here's another family quilt.


Unknown pattern it says.

Whig's Defeat variation I say.
One of the greatest versions EVER.

Here's the link. You can click on each file to read the worksheet and see the quilt.
http://www.bplonline.org/virtual/ContentDMSubjectBrowse.aspx?subject=Quilts

8 comments:

Susan said...

Thanks for taking us along on your travels, Barbara. I was stupefied by the wonderful Quilt Study Group show and hope to hitch a ride next time you go to Quilt Market.

Bette said...

I am trying to identify a quilt pattern from a civil war or a post civil war date. The pattern is a variation between a log cabin and a pineapple block, and I cannot find it,either in your encyclopedia or your Block Base program. I do apologize for contacting you in your blog, but it is the only way I know to get in touch with you.

I do enjoy your blog, and save all the information, but do not remember seeing anything similar to what i am researching.

My email is stashn33@frontier.com, if you have the time to contact me, I would greatly appreciate it. I can send photos, if you can send your email address.

Thank you

Marianne said...

Barbara, there is a very amazing medallion quilt in the Alabama state historical museum in Montgomery. It's brown and blue on a shirting background and folded on a quilt rack in a display. A quilter in the state has made a copy, and I asked the staff at the museum if they knew of a pattern based on it. They didn't. I tried to email the quilter and she didn't reply (probably my message ended up in her spam folder). If you are ever in Montgomery, please take a look. It is amazing!

Barbara Brackman said...

I just might be in Montgomery in a few weeks!

viridian said...

The quilting on that last quilt is wonderful!

Barb said...

great post - loved seeing those colliding quilting fans.

Susie Q said...

Never have liked or been drawn to crazy quilts... and after 20+ years figure I never will. Alabama sure like them. Wonder if their appeal is like my love of the disappearing nine patch that I make again and again with Moda charm squares - 420 different fabrics, none repeated - and FUN to do. One thing for sure my quilts will never be in a museum.

Susie Q said...

Look forward to your post after your trip to Montgomery.......