Iowa-Illinois Quilt Study Group

Kalona Quilt and Textile Museum

Kalona, Iowa

Saturday - August 7, 2004

The pictures in this article are thumbnails - click on them to see them close up.

We entered a cathedral August 7, 2004. The third IA/IL Quilt Study Group met in the Quilt and Textile Museum at the Kalona Historic Village in Kalona, IA. Hung on the walls in this vaulted ceiling and dimmed lighting of the Kalona Quilt and Textile Museum were some of the best doll and crib quilts designed by Amish women "with no more then an eighth grade education and no training in geometry or design." (quote from the cataloque accompanying the exhibit-"No Calico Allowed"). 

This writer's favorites in the Amish Exhibition were a North Carolina Lily in Pots, blue pots with pink flowers, a row of white squares followed by a black border, Schoolhouse, one the three to have been made by Amish women in the U.S. and soon to travel to Japan for a Shelly Zegart show, and Jacob's Ladder made in Ohio 1920-30 which contains multicolored squares bordered in red and pink. 

Also of beauty were the many antique spool cases beautifully refinished and a super accompaniment to the quilts. Then the Show and Share quilt show began. Everyone in attendance was a special guest; including Sarah Miller-many of her doll quilts are now in the International Quilt Study Center and Bettina Havig, President of AQSG, to view the quilts from Iowa and Illinois. 

Virginia Berger showed a red -- scrap crazy quilt from the 30's. Virginia also shared a wood block, which could have been used for printing fabric. Madley Randall brought a lovely silk 4-patch made by Helena Burdick of NY circa 1860-1880 -- had very little shattering. Lucillee Nordhousen's 1920's Star and Crescent wedding quilt in pinks and white was in pristine condition is now owned by Lois Macken. With early blues, shirtings and reds 1-inch strips Sunshine and Shadow Log Cabin was displayed by Beverly Ring. 

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Melva and Bill Berkland brought a family 9-patch. Each block contained a pinwheel and a variety of striped or checked fabric. "Overall the quiltmaker arranged a pleasing display of geometric and floral fabrics." (quote taken from the Berklands).Rosie Moeller's grandmother's faded red and white Double Irish Chain made in the 30's was shown by Sandy Mente (A sheet blanket was used for the batting). 

Handkerchief_QuiltPennie Horras (Pennie's quilts were on display last time IIQSG met in Feb.) exhibited a wonderful collection of hankies appliqued to a backing for a cheerful quilt. Some of the hankies contained the designers name and most came from family members. 

A Sunburst/ Mariner's Compass made of Garibaldi red/black charcoal and white fabrics with two compasses each with 24 points and separated by white circles came from a Lyndon, IL estate. Marilyn Galley, the owner of the quilt, also shared a piece of reproduction fabric of the print used in the quilt. A precious Jack and Jill from an Aunt Martha kit/pattern was made by the mother of Zoe Dorsey. The Tobacco Seal Quilt (discussed on QHL) was given to Jennifer Perkins. Her research noted -- in 1910 there were 77 city seals produced costing $8-$12 and college seals going for $10. This lovely piece was given to Jennifer who will be a wonderful caretaker. 

 

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Log_Cabin_-_Variation_-_Lightening.JPG (140913 bytes)Donna Furrow's estate sale find was a quilt with Log Cabin blocks on one side and Amish-like bars on the other side. The Straight Furrow was made with various 1920-1930 fabrics and the bars made of wool. 

A Wind Blown square/pinwheel, parallelograms and squares made with multi-colored fabric and made by Billie Nickolan's great aunt was a treasure. Glenda Freel purchased and brought a baby quilt made with scraps forming crazy quilt. Serving as a baby sitter in the McCellan Heights area of Davenport, IA. Maud Hainstock Grindred stitched a crazy quilt -- Embroidery over the seam lines started in the upper left corner and was left incomplete when she married. Granddaughter Rosemary Fuller has kept this family quilt. Catherine Noll Litwinow brought a Hexagon Basket purchased at the MN show June '04. It was decided this beautiful quilt was the result of a pattern in the 70's since the greens and pinks weren't quite 30's. Quarter inch horizontal quilting was an interesting choice by the quilter. 

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Shirley McElderry wowed us all with a quilt from an E-Bay kit quilt she stitched for her granddaughter. Shirley's exquisite applique and quilting only enhanced the beautiful pansy/rose/and fantasy flower bouquets. This 1942 Progress Kit # 1394 was named "The Dresden." Another lovely Log Cabin Quilt this time set in the Court House Steps variation contained muted multi-colored prints. The pink and teals of the 1870's helped to date Jane Ellen Colella's quilt. 

Coffin_QuiltThe "What is it award?" was won by Barb Eckoff's solid black, not quite a long rectangle piece which was quilted in cables. After a discussion it was thought to be a pall for a casket. A Square in a Square family piece was shown by Donna Furrow. The piece was dated turn of the century and tied with 2 different red yarns. Donna also showed a Snowball variation made by "Little Grandma Heneke and a tobacco bag top with a dresser scarf backing. 

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1900's peaches and green whirling Tulips was made by Lois M. Macken's grandmother. This must have been a "best quilt" due to it's excellent condition. Lois also stumped the gathering with an Anvil with Squared green with multi-colored fabrics made by Great Grandmother Clara Troyer. It was thought the quilt dated circa 1909. The tailor who lived next door to Nellie Garrelts Janssen gave her his wool suit samples, which were zig-zagged together to create a quilt. Kathy Last removed the rotting backing to discover some of the pieces still had their paper labels.

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Jane Ellen Colella found an Octagon (not quite a Pineapple) Log cabin from a Des Moines, IA quilt show. The quilt was said to be made in Goldfield, IA in the 1860's - 1880's. Pat Wood saved an old Whig Rose Variation. The solid red, greens with double pink print had only the seams left. The vibrant green was visible with the fabrics worn away. (Oh, to have seen this Whig Rose in better condition.) Belle Hinkhouse displayed a Crossed Canoe made with possible Gibaldri red print. This lovely Shirley_Macpiece, like many others shown, was without provenance. Shirley McElderry teased us with a maker's original Sun Bonnet Sue with animals. This quilt and other crib quilts will be the next display at the Kalona Quilt and Textile museum.

When the National Signature Quilt Documentation papers come the following will share their quilts. 

  • Marilyn Woodin-Dression Era rectangles from Frytown.
  •  Karan Flanscha-her IQG president wall hanging and Marcella's Friendship quilt made for Marcella's retirement. 
  • Jennifer Perkins-Basket blocks with paper name tags attached, a Brown Goose block had the words "catch me if you can." 
  • Marilyn Galley- embroidered names and Bird blocks possibly from the Omaha World Herald & designed by Nadine Bradley from a Colona, IL estate. 
  • Donna Furrow- Granddaughter's graduation quilt Sarah George and now owned by the Kalona Quilt and Textile museum-Album block quilt with India Ink signatures from OH, Sable, Salem and Goshen -. 1850 date was found on a block. 
  • Betty Robinson brought an Album block quilt where the Indigo/Lancaster Blue dye spread to the backing.
  • Shirley Pfeifer- showed the Washington United Methodist Church quilt with many, many names and an embroidered picture of the quilt made in the first quarter of the 20th century. 
  • Pat Skillman-Colonial Ladies, Pat brought the binder full of pictures and biographies of the makers.
  • Judy Middleton shared the Bishop Hill, IL Bicentennial Quilt-pictures of the building embroidered around the edges and signatures from people of the village. 

 


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The day ended with Emily's presentation of weaving and a tour of the new Loom house and a display of blocks and tops in the Woodin Collection. Next meeting April 2, 2005 at the Kalona Quilt and Textile Museum in the Kalona Historic Village. 
 

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