Saturday, August 20, 2022

1862 Crazy Quilt?


1862 on a quilt

We know so much about crazy quilts that despite that date
 no knowledgeable person would consider this as having been
stitched during the Civil War. The style was a fad
beginning about 1882 all over the country.

The Orange County Historical Museum, which owns it, credits it to 1882---one of 4 dates on the quilt.

1814--- nothing to to with when the quilt was made

See a big photo here of what's known as the Rebecca Wall Crazy Quilt: It's quite a nice example of a crazy quilt and it's origins are somewhat confusing.

Rebecca Bennehan Wall (1898-1986)

Rebecca Wall who donated the quilt was an interesting woman (She actually had little to do with this family piece except preserving it.) She was a professional librarian who worked at various posts including the New York City Public Library and the VA Hospital in Fayetteville, North Carolina. She lived in her home town Hillsborough in Orange County, North Carolina at various times and was a benefactor of the public library there, which maintains the Rebecca B. Wall Local History Collection to honor her.

You can probably find out quite a bit about her family there as they are proud of their connections to North Carolina politicians like North Carolina Supreme Court Justice Thomas Ruffin

Ruffin House in Hillsborough, about 1900

I'd certainly like to know more about her mother Annie Cameron Collins Wall (1862-1942.) Annie was the daughter of Annie Ruffin and George Pumpelly Collins, the wife of William Lewis Wall. The quilt passed through Annie Collins Wall to her youngest child Rebecca.

Apparently in the 1880s Annie was engaged to a young Virginia man who died of consumption before their marriage. She, his sister and his mother made this quilt with the unnamed man offering suggestions as to what should be included. 

Is this his pin, which he gave to his fiance?

His fraternity pin from his University of Virginia days and his birthdate (1862?) and graduation date (1883) are there. 

Did he also attend a Democratic 
Convention in 1883?

After his death, the story goes, his mother gave the quilt to Annie who went on to marry William Wall.

Annie's obituary in 1942

The quilt has many initials---young man, sister, mother, etc.?
His name???

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