ADAMS, Mass. — A replica quilt made by Susan B. Anthony when she was 15 years old will be unveiled on Sunday, Feb. 16, at 3 p.m. as part of the Susan B. Anthony Birthplace Museum's annual birthday celebration for the human rights leader.
The celebration will take place at the Adams Free Library. The event is co-sponsored by the Adams Historical Society, and is free and open to the public.
Author and an America Quilter Society certified quilt appraiser, Marjorie Childers, will speak at the event. Childers co-authored the book, "Massachusetts Quilts: Our Common Wealth." She is an adviser for the New England Quilt Museum in Lowell.
According to Gail Miller, a quilter from Cheshire and co-coordinator of the project, 64 quilters made the quilt top. The quilters came from as far as Windsor and Bennington (Vt.) in the north and Great Barrington in the south.
"The LeMoyne star design uses 16 different fabrics, suggesting this was 'a scrappy' quilt," said Miller. "Perhaps Susan collected scraps from fabrics made in her father's mill here in Adams."
The original 1835 quilt is fragile and in archival storage at the Rochester Museum and Science Center in Rochester, N.Y.
From the Berkshires, the hand-stitched quilt top replica traveled last year to Lenexa, Kan., where a second group of quilters joined the quilt top to its backing and batting (lining). Kansas was selected for the finishing phase of the quilt because Anthony's brothers were leaders in Kansas antislavery activities there. The replica project was part of the 100th anniversary of Kansas passing women suffrage in November 2013.
Since not all quilters were familiar with hand-stitching, Connie Logan, a Berkshire quilt historian and juried quilter, hosted a tutorial when the project began at the Ralph Florio Senior Citizen Center in Pittsfield. Logan also oversaw the technical assembly of the 1,500 pieces.
"At such an early age, Susan displayed the patience, diligence, and hard work that she later applied to her quest for women's suffrage," Logan said. "We were pleased to work on this project. In a way, it was to repay Susan for what she did for us.”