Thursday, March 18, 2021

Southern Twins


I love coming across a pair of twin quilts as it can lead to many questions about how pattern was passed around (and occasionally some answers.)

We're looking at a pair of quilts so similar I had the pictures filed as the same quilt until I looked a little closer. The most obvious difference is that one is sashed with a different color and one is in a lot better shape than the other. They're attributed to the Carolinas.

The North Carolina quilt was documented in their state project, attributed by the family to Annie Daly Creech (1827-1904) who spent most of her life in Goldsboro, Wayne County.

 Photos from the Quilt Index here:

Years ago documenter Erma Kirkpatrick thought it dated to before the Civil War and she noted it was both pieced and appliqued. Although she might have been referring to the blocks being joined as the piecing she also might have been talking about the leaves being pieced into a circle, which sometimes was the technique used in this design. The fruit at the top was also sometimes pieced into a circle.

McKissick Museum  Collection

The McKissick Museum at the University of South Carolina owns the second one, attributed to Adella Hays, about 1850.

Adella's name is inked on the front.
She is not so easy to find as Annie Daly Creech.

Perhaps she is this Adelia Hays listed in the 1860 Georgia census
living in Dooly County, Georgia married ? to Methodist Circuit Rider
T.W. Hays and living with the Roberts family on a farm. This
Adelia was born about 1835, old enough to have made a pre-Civil-War quilt.

The chintz-scale floral borders in the two quilts are different. Even though we cannot see much of Annie's we do get a good view of Adella's. Both are cut to feature a stripe of florals. The idea of bordering a conventional applique quilt with a chintz floral is SO Carolina. They did love their chintz and they had a lot of it.

Whenever I see a chintz border I tend to wonder where
she got the fabric. Did she have family in the fabric business?
And often that is the case.

Annie lived in Goldsboro, a railroad junction in the mid-19th century
and probably a market town after the Civil War.

A few years after Annie's time

Her husband Confederate Veteran Devereaux Creech (1830-1919) ran a General Store; as late as 1889 he was listed as owning a "GS." They had two sons and the boys took it over as Creech Brothers for a while but each went his own way, one continuing to run the general store and the other opening a jewelry store in Goldsboro.

Annie's flowery obituary
October 26, 1904

One quilt superimposed over another.
The same pattern.

We might have a clue as to where Annie got her fabric, but nothing about why these two quilts are so similar.

Adella Hays block

And how old are the quilts?  (Even if the chintzes are mid-century)
We'd want to look close before guessing they might be later.
Didn't solve many mysteries but the search was fun.

And one more question: Did Adella buy hers from Annie?

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