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Wednesday, September 28, 2011

A Civil War Quilt Story.....

When I was thinking about today's story, I gotta tell reminded me of one of the things I miss most about having the shop....the customers...the stories....the show-n-tell.

Today's story is equally sad, as was the last one.  At least it is not an enraging kind of sad.  We were adjacent to a grocery store.  One of the ladies in the deli department sent her husband in with a quilt when he lost his job.  They were unable to pay their bills and needed some quick cash.  He opens this stunning quilt and hands me an appraisal sheet he had done on it.  The documentation reported that this quilt did, in fact, date back to the civil war.  I won't even tell you what this quilt was worth!  I was stunned.  I called a quilt designer, whom I knew collected these kinds of quilts.  She wanted us to ship it to her so she could look at it and then she would ship it back if we couldn't come to an agreement on a price.  He didn't want to ship it.  I felt horrible for them.  So, as any good quilt shop owner would do....I bought it!  We exchanged e-mails and he asked that if I ever wanted to see it, I would e-mail him first.  I told him likewise, if they got back on their feet, they could buy the quilt back for what I gave them for it, just so it would stay in his family.  (Did I fail to mention that quilt has been handed down in his family since the war????)

These little star blocks are only 4".  There is so much quilting on this quilt, pictures just cannot do it justice.  I started to replicate this quilt "Scrappy Style", but I don't like how it is turning out.  So.....I'm going to have to start over and just do it in the three colors.  Funny thing is...this quilter must have ran out of the red...because there are a few blocks that are made with a different print--same color.

I am proud to own her, and have thought about selling her....but I just haven't been able to bring myself to do it.  I e-mailed him a few times and got no, until we move and I know whether I am going to have the perfect farmhouse for this one, it will go back to it's happy place.



Sue said...

Now that is a sweet story! I do feel badly that they had to sell this heirloom, but how fortunate to have placed it in a good home! This is a beautiful quilt! I think it's Pam Buda of Heartspun Quilts who calls that 'make-do' quilts....when you run out of a certain print, but you can use a similar fabric with the same color....or same color, different print? It's what quilters did back then. They made do :)
We are so blessed these days to have all the fabrics available to us that we have. I wonder if we really appreciate it.
What a great post. Thank you for sharing:)

Merilyn said...

What a wonderful story, and yes sad too!! At least the quilt is safe with you, you know it's story which adds to the value!! It must have been heartbreaking for that family to have to surrender this precious piece of their heritage!!!

Betweens said...

You are right this is an awesome quilt. What you did was also awesome they came to someone the KNEW would give it a great home and cherish this heirloom.

I would love to try to do something like this myself I love to hand quilt and this just makes my fingers itch to do it
Thanks for the great tale I am so glad that you also offered to let them buy it back not many would you do have a heart of gold