Saturday, July 9, 2011

28 Next Door Neighbor

Next Door Neighbor by Becky Brown, who writes:
"I think the more fabrics in a block the better."

The Next Door Neighbor block can remind us of war's tendency to turn neighbors against each other. Few victims of our Civil War represent a splintered community better than Bursheba Fristoe Younger whose haunting face on the left is a signature of this blog. Born in Kentucky, she moved to the new state of Missouri as a child and married Henry Younger, a drover, livery operator and trader in the western part of the state neighboring on the Kansas Territory. Her slave-holding family played a part in nearly every act of the Kansas-Missouri border conflict that grew into Civil War.

Henry Washington Younger

Bursheba and Henry had fourteen children and a prosperous home in the mid-1850s, but when the Kansas-Nebraska Act permitted settlers to vote the territory as free state or slave state, Henry felt compelled to act for a proslavery Kansas and  established a town and residence just over the border. He was elected to the new territorial legislature, often called the Bogus Legislature because voters and members were actual Missouri residents.

When free-state Kansans gained political control, Missourians abandoned their Kansas settlements. Henry opened a general store in Harrisonville, Missouri, and became mayor.
After war was declared in 1861 he supported the state's Union government. Neutrality was as dangerous as partisanship and Henry was shot dead on a Kansas road in 1862.  His murder was probably revenge, either for his proslavery politics or for his sons' reputations. Some say Jim and Cole Younger became bushwhackers to avenge their father's death; others believe Henry  was killed as a lesson to parents who let their boys run wild.

The widowed Bursheba could find no peace in guerilla-torn Missouri. The Union Army and the Kansas Jayhawkers harassed her, burning her house and then the neighbors' houses where she sought refuge.  Her sons were among Quantrill's Raiders who attacked Lawrence, Kansas in 1863, an act avenged by the Union Army's Order Number 11 creating a no man's land in western Missouri. With her Southern neighbors Bursheba and her youngest children walked south to Texas, settling near Sherman.

Four of Bursheba's 14 children
Henrietta with Jim, Bob and Cole Younger.
Bob died in prison in 1889. Jim committed suicide in 1902 and Cole lived to join a Wild West Show in the early 20th century.
Bursheba's boys refused to surrender. With a few other guerillas who turned to crime, Cole and Jim Younger became Missouri folk heroes. Their mother was periodically terrorized by lawmen looking for the gang. She returned to Missouri in 1870 where she died shortly after at the age of 54.

Bursheba's portrait from a 1906 book.
Worse things happened to her than
 being remembered as the mother of outlaws.

The Next Door Neighbor block was given that name by the Ladies' Art Company of St. Louis in the early 20th century. It's BlockBase #2787.

Cutting an 8" Finished Block
A Cut 1 very dark, 1 medium and 2 background squares 2-7/8". Cut each in half with a diagonal cut. 
You need 2 very dark triangles, 2 medium triangles and 4 background triangles.
B Cut 1 light, 1 medium and 1 background squares 5-1/4". Cut into 4 triangles with 2 diagonal cuts.
You need 4 light, 4 medium and 4 background triangles.

Piece this block in diagonal strips.


Janet said...

This block really hit close to home for me as I grew up near Harrisonville, MO and have often heard stories of the Youngers. Thanks.

Betty Lou said...

Thank you for the story of the Youngers, so interesting. Don't think I have ever seen this block before.

Vickie said...

The story captured me this week I just had to jump in and sew my block right away..thanks Barbara,cheers Vickie

Rosemary Youngs said...

Thank you so much for the wonderful history, love having a story to go with the picture

Anonymous said...

I remember old western movies with the Younger boys and their deeds. I have completed this block and posted it on my blog along with a how-to.

angie p, cctx said...

thank you for this weeks block. the history you have provided is so interesting. week to week i not only work on a block - i learn about the story behind the block.

thank you again!


Nancy said...

The Youngers were also a part of the James gang and their raid on Northfield, MN.... one of my husband's 'want to visit' places'.

Love the blocks... thank you for sharing. I am curious... where do we find the applique blocks? I love the New York Lily.