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Writer,Quilt maker,Folkartist, from Freestone County, Tx.


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Freestone County's "LOVE AFFAIR" With Quilts.


Locatie van Freestone County in Texas

Here are some wonderful Freestone County related quilts that I have recently uncovered in my research 
to record the quilt making legacies of the area.(I've also added the seamstresses and others who were creative.) 
I hope that you enjoy them as much as I have delighted in recovering their stories......If you know of any others 
please send information; photos,etc. on them to me at P.O.Box 336,Fairfield,Texas,75840 or by Email 
at syncopatedaccents@yahoo.com. Please share your Freestone County quilt stories and crafts
 (crochet,embroidery,etc.) with the world via: www.quiltstoriesbysherryann.blogspot.com.
James (Polk) Ashbury Emmons, Jr. story #298/Volume I
married Sarah Alabama McAdams ("Bam").... (who) made each of her children a feather mattress and pieced each of her grandchildren a quilt top. ...She also knew many folk medicine and herbal remedies for illness....

Roy Linn Gorman,...story #306/Vol I....Roy has a quilt in his possession, that was given to Reverend Gilmore, by the delegation attending the Methodist Conference in Alabama in 1850...

Mattie Lenna (Griffith) Emmons.....story #231/Vol I....She was an excellent seamstress and sewed for customers at her home for years.....


W. T. Watson married Mary (Weaver) Watson, daughter of Ezekiel  and Doritha Weaver who came to Texas in 1839...story #855/Vol I......community living, for the early settlers, was participation in church activities, where the Bible was taught and gracious southern cultural and educational foundations were laid....Mary Watson did her part in helping raise the money needed for building the church. She made a silk quilt, the Lincoln Log Pattern, which she gave, then bought back from the church for $250. It is now on display in the Freestone County Museum, given by her grandson Howard Watson....

Fairfield, Texas, is home to Blind Lemon Jefferson, the real G.I. Joe and the famous
Yellow Rose of Texas Rhinestone Cadillac. 
Freestone County Museum

Freestone County Records It's First Settlers On A Quilt

Molly's Place: Freestone County Museum Donation Quilt

This quilt was made to raise money for the Freestone County Museum.

Signature Quilt by Laverne Brackens....
2011 National Endowment for the Arts Folkart
Fellowship Award Recipient. Owned by the Freestone 


Community Life and Quilts

Young ,Texas, Freestone County by Margaret Young Holleman 
and Doris Cole Bellah.....

Dr. Young returned to Freestone county and became the first settler
in thecommunity ,properly named after him, as Young, Texas. He was 
among the first settlers in the state, after Texas had been readmitted
 to the union in 1870. 

....Settlers began rolling in with wagons, plows and dreams. Often 
Illness stalked the community but most were strong and with Dr. 
Young ever available, they survived. They farmed the rich lands,
 raised cotton and cattle....

...Young was a peaceful and happy community in spite of hardships.

 The ladies helped each other at canning time and quilted together
 at every opportunity. 

The men worked hard farming the land and raising cattle...Their

 lives were intense with hot summers, cold winters, droughts, 
and illness,...however, it never once changed their goals in life 
or their love for each other.....

The War of Secession Military Forces
pages 18-19...Vol I
...A Yankee description of the soldiers from Fort Donelson is interesting:

"Viewed from the distance, the varied and grotesque costumes of the captives
 presented a most novel sight. In approaching the prisoners they looked very much
 like a vast throng of gypsies, having blankets of all colors, a few of them fantastic ponchos made of fragments of carpeting and bed quilts sent to them as winter
 clothing by rebel families in Secessia. Their garments are of every possible pattern
 and description. NO TWO ALIKE, and taken as a whole, they are the most non 
descript apparel......."

Freestone County In The Civil War by Michael Edd Bonner ...Vol I,pgs 37-38.
... Ladies of the county supported the war effort in various ways, some spun and wove cloth for the soldiers. A daily quota was sometimes established and met to provide much-needed fabric. Others contributed by substituting for finer fabric,like silk, with "itchy-scracthy" homespun.
...Even harder to bear, perhaps were the deaths caused by disease. Over exposure and lack of proper clothing and nutrition weakened the resistance of the boys in gray...
...Freestone county's main cash crop, like that of much of the South, was cotton. The big problem was inability to eat cotton, and food was a necessity for the confederacy. Some cotton was exported, but the Union blockade prevented much of this. All The cotton produced could not be spun into cloth in home industry, and textile mills were virtually unknown in the South. The way to Mexico and market was long and hazardous. Exportation through Galveston, their usual route was uncertain.

Order of the Eastern Star -Fairfield,Texas...Vol.II, page 559.

...Through two World Wars the members were busy knitting, rolling bandages,sewing and helping send needed supplies to the Armed Services....

The Order of the Eastern Star is a charitable and benevolent organization...

Bonner, Tom Robinson by Michael Edd Bonner...story #128,Vol. I,pgs. 274-75

Laura Willard-Bonner is an unusual person. She is a past Matron of Fairfield Chapter 331, Order of the Eastern Star and has served as Deputy Grand Matron. She is a member of the First Baptist Church in Fairfield. 

...(as) an accomplished needle worker, she received much joy from Sewing, Quilting, and Needlepointing. 

Her children and grandchildren have been the recipients of many of the projects of her needle.

An excellent cook, her family is partial to her fresh coconut cake.......

Stewards Mill Store

...The store of yesterday sold the necessities of life. Fabric, shoes, buckskin, collars and read-made clothing could be purchased....


Goolsby, James Matthes and Georgia Americus by Ennie Goolsby Swiecski.
Vol.I story #350,pg 380...

...She also made clothes for all the family, as there were no readymades in those days...


Pullin,Ure and Ida Burleson,Vol.I story # 680,page 540.

...Ida was a good cook and did beautiful needlework.


Pullin, Anthony Graham,Vol. I,story #678.

...Dee did beautiful needlework...


Calame-Daniels by Mrs. Bobby Daniel,Vol.I, stories #8l-82,pg.300.

...To protect their life savings, Emile quilted it into the clothing of the girls...

Emile Fontaine had quilted their life savings into the clothing of the girls for the trip to Texas....Laura Calame Keeling used to recall how proud she was as a 6 year old to make the trip with a great deal of money quilted into her clothing.


Fairfield History Club....page 125,Vol.I.

...a sewing machine was presented to the Homemaking Department as a memorial to a deceased club member....


Life and Times Change In Fairfield by Freestone County Museum and Fairfield Recorder.

...usually, the men could be found around the feed or hardware store purchasing supplies and food for the livestock and farming operations. The women were checking the dry goods stores for sewing and clothing needs for their families. And the children had the privilege of watching the weekly"cowboy" movies, sometimes two and three times through....


Kirven, As I Remember It by E.M.Prouty , pages 140-41.

...Another business which was rather unique at that time was a ladies hat and dress shop...two tailor shops...


Alice Louise King....Vol.II,story #432.

...To make a living for her family, Alice raised chickens, cows,and hogs and farmed....

Her favorite task was making quilts which she sold for $5.00 each.


Life in the 1800's/What was expected of the males and females

Johnson, James Hiram and Betty Compton(Sallie Frances Lookingbill).
story #462/Vol.I

...Sallie was known for all the nice qualities of a lady. She was famous for her skill in the kitchen, being called one of the greatest of cooks. She also sewed a fine seam and ran a smooth household. 


Watson, Charles Henry
story #845/Volume I

On 10-10-1897, Charles was married to Miss May Beachamp, (b.6/16/1875-d.1/14/1919) of Dew,Freestone county, Texas. She was well educated, spirited,and accomplished in all the arts necessary for managing a lively household...


Vol. I,story #400

Gertrude de Binion Carr Hayes was born in Mississippi in 1850. She attended schol in Marion Alabama. at the prestigious Judson Institute, the oldest female college,South of the Mason Dixon line. Her major studies were Ink Drawing and White Satin Stitch embroidery,...

These were fitting subjects for a young lady of culture in the South of the 1860's. Her family owned a cotton plantation and slaves, both of which were wiped out by the northern armies.


Jones,John Milton (Uncle Johnny) (B.6/22/1846-d.8/28/1924)
Lilla Adeline Tallant-Jones b.7/6/1849-d1/23/1927
Story 473/Vol.

John Milton Jones,with his wife Lilla A. Tallant-Jones came (to Texas) in an ox-drawn wagon. Everything they owned was in the wagon, including his muzzle-loader rifle and her spinning wheel. They had twenty dollars in cash...

Uncle Johnny raised practically everything his family ate, supplemented by deer, rabbit, squirrel, and wild turkey. He made his own syrup, and kept bees. His wife, Lilla Adeline, made lye from wood ash, which she used for making soap. They made charcoal  from the blacksmith forge. She carded wool and cotton, spun her own thread, and wove her own materials for clothing. She knitted socks for her family, and raised geese whose feathers were used for her beds and pillows.


Mandeville, Park and Bertha
Volume II/story 518

...Bertha was a very pretty woman, with an olive complexion, very blue eyes, and dark curly hair. She worked hard and managed the family finances. She loved to do handiwork of all kinds. She made quilts, crocheted afghans, shawls, and bedspreads, knitted sweaters and a full length coat for herself, and did numerous craft projects. She always had an optimistic attitude.

They made their living by sharecropping, moving frequently. Park always raised Cotton, and put his five sons to work to help get in the crop. Bertha always raised chickens and sold the eggs; she also raised and sold turkeys. They finally bought a house and land in Currie near Wortham.


Annie Euphemia Campbell...story #185/Volume I....On the side, she was a seamstress of great fame...A dear cousin, Mrs W.B. Robinson, needed assistance with her growing family, and she assured "Phemie" that there would be lots and lots of sewing for her to do in Palestine. There was!


Mrs. Lela Ward...Vol. II/story 9

.....learned from her grandmother Mrs. Louise King...(to make quilts)...


Simon Harrison and Lillian (Carter) Wills....Story #198/Vol.I and Story #944/Vol. II

....when Simon and Lillie married, her parents gave them a cow and calf, ten handmade quilts, a feature bed, and feather pilows. This was the wedding gift her parents gave to each of their children. The cow and calf were picked from the family heard and the feathers picked from the geese that were on the Carter farm....


Mrs. Olive Spear-McVey...Vol. II/story # 564

...her expertise is designing and making women's fashions helped supplement her income by sewing for the public. Her hands were never idle, and she did not retire from public work until she was 76 years old.
Mrs. McVey's second child, Mildred Ruby McVey...inherited her mother's talent of being an expert seamstress and she, too, sewed for the public many years.....


Packer, Joseph (Pete), and Lamar(Gardner)by Mrs. Lamar Packer Story #649 / Vol.I, page 524...Mrs. Packer's teaching career encompassed thirty years -thirteen years at Green Briar, Winkler and seventeen years at Dogan Elementary School in Fairfield. She is now retired....Since retirement, Mrs. Packer spends her time cooking, sewing and caring for her little two year old granddaughter, Jennifer...The parents of Mrs. Packer were Jerry and Roxie Gardner... Lamar Packer died in 2004.


Owens,Mrs. Horace W. by Weldon OwensStory # 636/Vol.II, page 398Willie Mae Howell was among the few children born in the Brewer community before it became the town of Teague (in 1907). Midwifery was performed by Mrs. J.C. Chumney at three o'clock in the morning in the residence of the child's parents, William Augustus Howell and wife, Sallie Fitzhugh Sims-Howell, July 27,1890.Since her early childhood, she became known only as "Willie". The name was retained throughout her long life. Also during early childhood, her incredible talents with fabric, needle and sewing machine were reognized, and her own love for employing those talents for both herself and others laid a foundation for her reputation as a seamstress of real artistry....However, throughout her adult life her career for more than 40 years with N. W. Bendy Company embraced her equal talent in salesmanship for which she was honored by Teague townsmen and especially local merchants as "Saleslady of the year."Her bubbling countenance behind the Bendy store counters gradually, no doubt, contributed to everybody within the borders of Teague trade territory calling her "Miss Willie".


Simpson, Denton H. and Eula Mae by Alliene Allen and Louise HunterStory # 779/Vol.II,page 462
...Mae sewed for the public and made costumes for the programs at church and school...May enjoyed crocheting, quilting,and making formals for the girls...


Allen, M.C. (Buddie) and Alliene by Alliene S. Allen

...Alliene was born July 25,l912, the daughter of Denton Hunter Simpson and Eula Maye Smith-Simpson...She became Fairfield's first homemaking teacher in l943, and held the position until she retired in l978...


Newell, Mr. and Mrs. John Sims by Catherine Newell Elliott.
Story # 609/Vol.II,page 387

...Mary Catherine Sims married Joseph Newell(b.2/4/1845--d.3/6/1926). The Newell family has in safe keeping the quilt, the wedding gift to Mary Catherine Sims from her mother, Charity Jane Manning Sims (b.1/15/1839--d6/20/1880). The marriage date 11/26/1873 indicatesthe quilt is more than one hundred years (at least 115).The quilt is "Tree of Life" pattern constructed of red and green calico on white. The stitches are unbelievably small and beautiful. The Newells were...early pioneers from North Carolina via Alabama. They participated in the Civil War...owned land near Fairfield...


Dewitt Kimble Compton...by Michael Edd Bonner...Story 236/Volume I,page 327.

Dewitt Kimble Compton was born a Avant Prairie (Dew) in Freestone county on August 21,1853 He was the son of William Scott Compton and Angelina Louisa Gunn. The family had moved to Texas from Tennessee about 1850 in the company of Major High and Major Blaine.

On December l7,1879, he married Mrs. Nancy Theodosia "Puss" Jones Strother. She was the daughter of Lewis Calloway Jones and Clara Ann Reynolds and the widow of John Strother. She was born December 267, 1855 in Arkansas....

Nancy Theodosia Jones Compton was a member of the Primitive Baptist (Hard shell) Church. When she married a Methodist preacher, she joined the Methodist church but remained a "Hard shell Baptist" at heart. She spent much of her time in her later years quilting. There was no foolishness in her; when she made up her mind to do something--her way--she did it...


Thornton, Macon and Leenetie...story #866/ Vol.II, page 498.

...Leenettie enjoyed staying home. She liked to piece quilts and her work was excellent. She and Macon designed and quilted some quilts which are greatly treasured by their children...


Edwards , Evelyn...by Robert Edwards ...Story # 223/Vol.II ,page 219.

...She cooked, washed, ironed, scrubbed, cleaned and sewed for her family...It seemed that she had always had the job of housekeeping and child rearing...Evelyn hated housekeeping, but she attacked it as an enemy and Dad was most pleased to come home to a clean house, good food and neatly cared for children...


J.D.Teague Married Joyce (Berry) Teague...Stories #85l--853/Vol.II,page493.

...Her hobbies are sewing and quilting...


Clark,Carl Lee by Mary Lynn Luther...story #220/Vol.I,page 321.

...Willie Cam was an excellent seamstress and sewed for her children and grandchildren...


Sims, Corin Johnson by Edwin Sims...story#780/Vol.II,page 463.

Corin Johnson was born in Fairfield, Texas, on August, 26,1869---d.October 26,1900. Her father was R.T. Johnson (b.12-13-1830--d.12-19-1890). Her mother was Sue M. Johnson (b.12-2-1847--d.3-19-1899).

Corin was a school teacher and also on the Examining Board for Austin for other teachers. She painted very large oil paintings...48"x36". They were: "Naomi and Ruth","Christmas Morn","Easter Dawn","Pharaoh's Horses". She also painted a three section screen. She pieced quilts and embroidered where the pieces were joined. All these paintings and quilts were made during the early part of the 1890's...

Fryer, Mary Bryant by Barbara Fryer Price …Story #332 / Vol. I,  page 371.
…Among her interests were playing card games. Gardening, and sewing. She was a member of the Garden Club, the Methodist church, and the Order of the Eastern Star…

Adam , Robert A. Dr. by Mrs. Eugene M. Gibson, Jr. by Mrs. Eugene M. Gibson, Jr.
Story #5/Vol. I, page 222

October24,1863, Rebecca Adams wrote her husband that she was busy as she could be trying to “get the negroes some clothes made before the cold weather. She expected to get 40 yards out of the on that day, making a total of 80 yards since he left home. By late January 1864, she had turned out 250 yards….

McElroy, Jane by Johnnie Mae McElroy Carter…Story #549/Vol.II.
Jane lived to be 110 years old….She was born in 1838 and died in 1948…she was of African and American Indian descent…She was born a slave…but lived the majority of her life as a free American. As a girl she lived near Springfield in Limestone county.
….Aunt Jane knew many natural home remedies for illnesses using roots and herbs found in the countryside….She spent many hours at the neighbors Arah and Lillie Evan’s home. She helped Lillie gather and prepare vegetables…Lillie in return sewed for Aunt Jane…..

McVey, Mrs Olive Speer by Dorothy McVey…Story #564/Vol.II,pg366.
…Her expertise in designing and making women’s fashions helped supplement her income by sewing for the publc. Her hands were never idle…
Mildred Ruby McVey (her second child)…inherited her mother’s talent of being an expert seamstress and she, too, sewed for the public many years..(she ) stays busy sewing for herself after retirement…..

Bond, John P. by Mrs Altha Bond Wren…Story #108/Vol.I, page 266.
…They drove two oxen-drawn wagons to Bryan…They brought back barrels of flour, coffee, sugar, salt, farming implements, thread for sewing, material and tools for clearing and till the land…

Hunter, Eldredge…Story #430/Vol.I,page 4l5.
…son of Bailey Hunter, Sr. and Catherine Elmira Abney….Mary Eliza…their third child, born 1894 married Samuel Govan…she is a seamstress…

Ivy, Jim (James Sanford),Sr. and Lydia Stripling…Story #439/Vol.I,pg 419.
….Lydia first met her future husband, Jim Ivy, one summer day as she sat in the yard at the spinning wheel….Lydia had a Singer sewing machine, and she would sew for people who would work her crops for her. She was known to be an excellent seamstress, cutting and fitting clothes with little help of a pattern…

Lott, James T. by Mary Grace Lott Dent…Story #546/Vol. I, pages 472-475….A DREAMER ON HORSE BACK-1856
Loyd Lott deserted his hounds and pursued and won the hand of Fredonia Grace Davis, whom he married on February 3,1897…
Grace Lott gave boundless energy to her Texas home on the hills, and presided with frugality and grace amid the hardships of cooking and cleaning…

Hunter, Clyde and Louise(Simpson)…Story # 389/Vol.II, page 289.
…Louise has always been adept with needle and thread or the sewing machine. For many years she sewed for others, as well as, her own family. Embroidery, crochet, and quilting have always kept her fingers busy when she is not working her many beautiful flowers and plants.

Cora Lee Hall-Brown was featured in the exhibit …MODELS IN THE MIND by Mr. Eli Leon in 19------. This is what he had to say about her quilt making….
….Born 1900 and died in 1981…Cora Lee …lived all her life on the out skirts of Mt. Enterprise, Texas. She learned to quilt from her mother and grandmother. A prolific quilt maker, she gave them freely to her family during her lifetime while accumulating a prodigious store herself. At her death, she left 15 quilts to her only grand daughter and one each, as remembrances to the 64 children of her 13 brothers and sisters.

Cherry (Hayes) Henderson…operates CHERRY’S QUILT SHOP in Ft. Worth which features quilts and pillows made by by Mrs. Henderson, herself. She was born and raised in Freestone County, Texas, the daughter of Jane Hayes, a guitar playing Blues singer. She learned to quilt from her Laura Hayes-Collins her grandmother.

Leophia Morton-Carden ….born May 27,1909 in Leon county to Mr. and Mrs. Earnest and Charlotte (Strawther) Morton. Her grandparents were Philip and Matilda Strawther of Freestone county. …Leophia’s public school education began at Owen’s Chapel CSD which consisted of one room and one teacher for grades one thru eight. She then attended and graduated from Lincoln High School in Palestine, Texas…
She received a B. A. degree from Wiley College, Marshall, Texas and did graduate study at Prairie View A&M College. Her chosen major was English and minor Homemaking.
Leophia….taught at Dogan and Fairfield ISD ,where her assignments included Math, Science, Biology and History (Texas, World and American). Her teaching career lasted 37 years….She organized the Senior citizens in Fairfield and Butler communities. She is a member of Freestone county RTA Quilt Guild, and the Order of  the Eastern Star

Lancaster, William Thomas by Lillian Hawkins...Story #513/Vol.I,page 455.
….Martha Ann, with her spinning wheel, soon had enough wool thread to knit socks and stockings for the family. She would spin heavy cotton thread to weave bed covers edging them with fringe, that were beautiful and lasted a lifetime. As she would spin, it was Mack’s duty to catch the thread as it came off the spinning wheel and sometimes he would fall asleep on the job…

Curry, Paul Jones…Story #249/page 332…Vol.I.
…Paul was a hardworking, energetic man, and his occupation was farming and ranching most of his life. He was helped by his industrious wife, Maggie, who was an excellent homemaker and mother. She was also a fine seamstress, and avid gardener…

Sims, Frank Fitzpatrick by Ms. Corin Neyland-Stroud-Forke…Story #751,Vol.I,page 572.
Frank Fitzpatrick, their ….married  Corin Johnson…..and move to Cotton Gin and worked in a general mercantile store—one of the earliest stores in Freestone county…
SIMS,CORIN JOHNSON by Edwin Sims…Story# 780/Vol.II, page 463.
Corin Johnson was born in Fairfield, Texas on August w6,1869. She died October 26,1900. Her father was R.T. Johnson,(born 12-13-1830 and died 12-19-1890). Her mother was Sue M. Johnson (born 12-2-1847 and died 3-19-1899).
Corin was a schoolteacher and also on the examining board for Austin for other teachers. …She painted very large oil paintings---48”x 36”. They were:”Naomi and Ruth”, “Christmas Morn”, ”Easter Dawn”, ”Pharoah’s Horses”.  She also painted a three section screen….She also pieced quilts and embroidered where the pieces were joined. All these paintings and quilts were made during the early part of the 1890’s…

Packer,Joseph (Pete),and Lamar (Gardner) by Mrs. Lamar Packer…Story#649/Vol.I,page 524.
…Mrs Packer’s teaching career encompassed thirty years…thirteen at Green Briar,Winkler and seventeen years at Dogan Elementary School in Fairfield. She is now retired.
The parents of Mrs. Packer were Jerry and Roxie Gardner…
Since retirement, Mrs. Packer spends her time cooking, sewing, and caring for her little …..grand daughter, Jennifer….

…The concession stands were closed. Celebrants were seen sitting in chairs under trees. Some small children sat on the merry-go-round. Young adults lay on quilts spread between their motorcycles….(June19,1977).

Owens, Mrs. Horace W. by Weldon Owens…Story#636,Vol.II,page 398.
Willie Mae Howell was among the few children born in the Brewer community before it became the town of Teague (1907). Mid wifery was performed by Mrs. J.C. Chumney at three o’clock in the morning in the residence of the child’s parents, William Augustus Howell and wife, Sallie Fitzhugh Sims-Howell, July 27,1890.
Since her early childhood, she became known only as “Willie”, the name that was retained throughout her long life. Also during early childhood, her incredible talents with fabric, needle and sewing machine were recognized, and her own love for employing those talents for both herself and others(s) laid (a) foundation for her reputation as a seamstress of real artistry…However, throughout her adult life her career for more than 40 years with N.W. Bendy Company embraced her equal talent in salesmanship for which she was honored by Teague townsmen and especially local merchants as “Saleslady of the year”. 
Her bubbling countenance behind the Bendy store counters gradually, no doubt, contributed to everybody within borders of Teague trade territory calling her “MISS WILLIE”….
Henry, Revoydia Beatrice(Winston)….by Revoydia Henry…Story #359,page 276,Vol.II.
Revoydia Winston- Henry…born 3-6-193l to Plea Winston and Revoydia Veonia Woodard-Winston in Butler, Freestone county, Texas ….married Alton Henry in 1950….According to her daughter Alta Faye …she is a seamstress  and quilt maker….Alta Faye herself is a seamstress…but does not make quilts……

We Love Our Quilts!!!
Here are some wonderful Freestone County related quilts that I have recently uncovered in my research to record the quilt making legacies of the area. I hope that you enjoy them as much as I have delighted in recovering their stories......If you know of any others please send information;photos,etc. on them to me at P.O.Box 336,Fairfield,Texas,75840 or by Email at syncopatedaccents@yahoo.com. Please share your Freestone County quilt stories with the world via: www.quiltstoriesbysherryann.blogspot.com.

***The ladies of the Wacky Pack Quilters get together monthly for a girls night out......These ladies can be visited at the following websites listed below.

"Toast to a Rising Star' celebrates, Texas as being the 5th 
 largest wine producing state in the United States.Three of the
Wacky Pack members contributed blocks to this beautiful award 
winningTexas Quilt.

It's Mollys Place

(This is a very interesting article about Molly Fryer's mother
( Ernestine Lamberth Mandeville),who was a Freestone
 County Quilt maker....A must read article.Enjoy!!!)


The WackyPac

Back row L to R--Rhonda, Kathleen, Charlotte, Kathy, Annale, (Center) Molly, Bottom Row L to R--Kathy, Patty, Jerri

The Wacky Pack quilters have made quilts to raise money for Relay for Life of Freestone County for the past several years. One year, the quilt was made in pink for breast cancer in honor of member, Jerri Hendrix, a breast cancer survivor. One year the quilt was made in blue, representing colon cancer, in honor of member Kathy Earley, a colon cancer survivor. 

Rhonda Lawton's Blog

Kathy Early

My Winning Block


I am a Christian wife, mother, sister, friend and a quilter. My Mama was also a quilter so I guess ya could just say "it's in my genes". My quilting studio is called "Mama and Me" in memory of my beloved mother. I grew up in Humble, TX, hence the name "Humble Quilter". I have been married to my best friend for 39 years. I have two awesome sons who have blessed me with awesome daughter-in-laws. I have three precious grandchildren -- Calam, Camryn, and Canon -- who bring me pure joy. We spend lots of time following them to baseball, basketball, concerts, school plays, and just fun times! I enjoy sewing, quilting, and reading. One of my greatest pleasures is knowing that Jesus Christ is my Savior and being with my family and friends.



This is  a very interesting tidbit of info on a Freestone County Signature 

Quilt created in 1933. This was found in a google search .

[TNCANNON] Willard, Moore Friendship quilt

 stitched in Freestone CountyTexas, in the March and April of 1933

Signatures on the friendship quilt:
 Mrs. J. A. Guhl 
Mrs Liza Moore
 Mrs T.S. Henderson
 Inez Phillips
 Mrs. Ed Ward
 Mrs. ______ Seall
Mrs. J. D. Johnson
 Mrs. Joe Brown
 Lila Murphy
 Cora Moore
 Mrs Annie Moore
 Mrs Mattie Lee Ivy
 Mrs. Bill Moore
 Mrs. Fay Moore
 Mrs Frank Willard
 Aunt Gus
 Mrs W. J. Mills
 Mrs L.E. Wiggins
 Mrs. Ben Willard

(*** If anyone has ever seen or have a photo of this friendship quilt I
would love to have a copy of it, to share with the followers of our blog
 and to document its existence in the Freestone County Legacy of quilt 
making. Please share at syncopatedaccents@yahoo.com or 
1213 South Bateman Rd.,Fairfield, Texas.)


Octura Preston family “YOYO”quilt. Mrs.Preston 
is the daughter of Rev.Cupid
 and Addie Mae Lee-Kelley              
(African American style)
Freestone county ,Texas

Idias Mims pieced this 9-patch
 quilt above....Fairfield, Texas


Hattie Mae Titus-Johnson -Freestone County Quilt maker.She is
a member of the six generations of the Titus family quilt making
lineage. (No photos of her quilts are available.)

Minerva Rischer
Freestone County Quilt maker

The quilt above was created by Mrs. Thornton's third grade
Class of 1990 at Teague Elementary School, Teague, Texas.

This quilt created by (CPS) Child Protective Services of Freestone county,
raised $2,000 for the project. It featured children's hand prints.
Vivian Smith has wonderful remembrances of being tutored to  create quilts
along side her mother Josephine Guarity and grandmother,Malinda Rogers-Ward.
She recalls family members,neighbors and herself gathering at someone's house to assist in
the making of quilts She was still a young girl. She says there was always lots of good food
and socializing that wentalong with the process. Her family lived on a farm in Winkler,Texas and also near Streetman,Tx.

The two quilts above were created by a Busby family member of
Teague, Texas. The original quilt maker is anonymous.



Exhibition Covers History of Galveston Island as a Trans Oceanic Port of Immigration and the Socioeconomic Impact of Immigrants on Texas Between 1845 and 1924 

.....This new traveling exhibit chronicle{d}The Port of Galveston’s largely forgotten history as a major gateway to American immigration from 1845 to 1924. Forgotten Gateway builds on a growing scholarly and public interest in the history of migration patterns to America and Galveston’s place (as one of the nation’s top immigrant ports) in that history.

“This is the first time that Galveston’s legacy as a port of entry has been fully explored on a national scale,” said Nashid Madyun, director of the Texas State History Museum. “Everyone knows the role that Ellis Island played in American history. Few people know that long before Ellis Island processed its first immigrant, Galveston had been the port of entry to hundreds of thousands of people who helped settle Texas and the American MidwestTexas’ growth and development would have been very different without the impact of immigrants who came through Galveston.”

While New York’s Ellis Island’s location made it a natural port for Europeans, Galveston attracted a diverse group of people from Europe, Mexico, South and Central America and even Asia In addition, before the Civil War, it was a major port for forced migration – the sale and transport of slaves from Africa and other points in the United States to Texas.

The exhibit highlights enduring humanities themes in the history of immigration including: the dangers of the journey; making a life in a new land; navigating bureaucracy; confronting discrimination; and becoming “American.”  ........
 This beautiful quilt (was) one of
         200+ original artifacts .... featured 
        in this amazing exhibit which (was) funded by the
          National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)...

This beautiful quilt is a "JEWEL"  created by slave descendents of the Sims
family of  Simsboro....Freestone County,Texas. It was featured in the above exhibit.
 The following quotes an excerpt from the museum's website advertising of this exhibit:

"The story of the Sims family of Freestone county is the story of slaves forced to migrate to Texas through Galveston. It might have been lost, if it hadn't been stitched into the fabric of quilts passed through seven generations. Winnie Sims was one of 17 slaves brought from Georgia by their owner in 1852 and transported by barge up the Trinity River. From there they came by ox cart to a plantation in Freestone County in East Texas, one-half of whose population was slaves. After Emancipation, the family bought land on the former plantation and continued to live there. Winnie Sims,her daughter,Sophie and her grand daughter Florida--all born into slavery--kept their family stories alive as they pieced together colorful quilts. The quilts have been passed down through the matriarchs of the family as a badge of honor, grace and perserverance."


African American Quilt maker,Lucy Sims was featured in this exhibit
and catalog in 1992 by Eli Leon
Lucy was born c.1874-died 1941. She lived in Mt. Zion and Galveston,Texas.
During the winter she was  always peicing or she and her neighbors would meet at one another's
house toquilt and have a midday dinner. The women took turns quilting and cooking or might sit
on the sidelines, piecing. Sims had a quilting frame suspended from the bedroom ceiling on ropes;
they had to be put up at night. The winter weather was bitter cold and blankets were unheard of.
People made their own quilts. The Wild Goose Chase, her only surviving quilt, was given to her
daughter, Texanna Jones, soon after it was completed, around 1925.
Mabel Cloud and her  six sisters learned to quilt from her mother and other women in the
community of Petersburg,Texas. She remembers going from house-to-house to help neighbors
quilt. Mabel always loved to piece and quilt She does not know where any of her quilts are today
,but she does remember that one of them was created from the bowtie pattern and she gave that
one to her son. Mabel is 77 years old and has raised a son and a daughter. She lives in Kerens, Texas.

This interesting quilt with the little men pattern was retrieved from
a local salvage area in Freestone County and is owned by the
Don Tolar family.

This Improvisational was retrieved from the trash in a  local
African American neighborhood located in Freestone county,Tx.

This beautiful "STAR" quilt and the three quilts following  it are
creations from the hands of Peggie(Robbie) Ross who lives in Wildwood
addition,Freestone county,Texas. Peggie and her aunt piece quit tops....but
do not quilt them. Her mother was also a quilt maker.


Katie Mae Durham Tatum b.1917-d.20ll. Freestone County Quilt maker.

 Mary Eliza Hunter-Freestone County Quilt maker and mother of Titus family
 quilt maker A.M. ( Sweet) Hunter-Titus. Eliza was also a quilt maker.

 Jimmy Shoemake-Freestone County Quilt maker.His Mother was also
a quilt maker according to Wilbur T. Bonner-Titus.

Ella Mae Moody
b. 1922 d. 2011
African American quilt-by Ella Mae Moody of 
Teague, Freestone County,Tx
Born: August 1, 1922
Place of Birth: Freestone County, TX
Death: July 16, 2011
Place of Death: Dallas, TX
Occupation: Housekeeper
Hobbies: Fishing, Gardening, Cooking, Singing
Organizations: New Zion Missionary Baptist Churcgh

Survived By

Lonnie L. Moody and wife, Denise, Son
Chester Ray Moody, Son
Clinton Junior Moody and wife, Kathy, Son
Dorothy Lee, Daughter

Preceded in Death By

Young Mims, Father
Felicia Watson Mims, Mother
Clinton Moody, Sr., Ex-Spouse
Boykin Lee, Spouse

Ruby Titus Rischer-Freestone County Quilt maker .
(Photos of her quilt are not available.)
Courage Quilt
Pieced by--Becky Stephenson & Jerrianne Evans
Machined quilted by Sue Garman

Remember Me Block/The Signature Quilt by Pepper Cory ; Susan McKelvey. 
This quilt was made for a fundraiser for the Freestone County, Tx, "American Cancer Society Relay for life". The names on the blocks are cancer survivors or those that were lost to cancer.....Owned by Phillip Stephenson. (Please click link below to view the signature quilt.)


Hayne, Mary Hopkins, Mosaic Star-detail. ca. 1825. From Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin ,Texas Sesquicentennial Quilt Association, Texas Quilt Search. Published in The Quilt Index, http://www.quiltindex.org/basicdisplay.php?kid=4F-88-D3



Freestone County, Texas

The Fairfield Recorder newspaper
Thursday, September 7, 2006

Keeps busy playing 42, making rugs . . .
Kirvin woman enjoys 94 active years

She calls herself “the oldest woman in Kirvin, living in the oldest house in 
Kirvin,” but a visit with Sarah Nettle does not seem to be with a 94-year-old.

Mrs. Nettle was presented with 94 red roses at a family birthday celebration, 
held August 29.

Mrs. Nettle was born August 29, 1912 to Ellie and Will Goolsby a mile and a 
half from Caney Baptist Church in what was then known as the community of 
Israel. She attended Burleson schools, and married Batchelor Nettle in 1931. 
They had twin boys two years later, Doug and Don, followed ten years later by a 
daughter, Evenda.

She and the family traveled with her husband, who worked in the oil busines, 
until one year when the children had to change schools ten times.

In 1948, the house the family lived in burned to the ground, and “we bought 
this old hull and went to work on it,” she says. “It was built in 1905 for the 
man who ran the cotton gin. It was built even before the post office was.”

“When Kirvin was first built, the cotton gin was the first thing that went up, 
because they were having to haul cotton to Corsicana,” she says.

She held several jobs over the years, the first with Barker Cleaners, the 
second with Williford Insurance and the third with Awalt Wholesale, from which 
she retired at age 72.

“I figured if I wanted to get any traveling done, it was time to get going,” 
she says.

She enjoys her eight grandchildren -- Laurie, Brad, Susie, John, Sarah, Tammy, 
Justin and Angie -- and says it may not be long before she is a great-

Quilting has always been a favorite hobby, and she figures she has made 
hundreds of them over the years.

Her mother taught her to quilt, and she remembers having slumber parties that 
turned into quilting bees.

“She wound up taking a lot of the stitches out, I reckon,” she says.

There are probably not many homes in Kirvin that don’t have something in them 
that she hand-crafted.

Today, she has focused her attention on hooked rugs and afghans, and has 
enjoyed playing 42 every second and fourth Tuesday for the past 23 years.

The 42-playing group of friends has 16 members that meet and bring lunch.

Diagnosed one year ago with leukemia — her doctor told her a jealous lover 
would kill her before the disease did -- she hasn’t let it slow her down much.

“I can’t get going before 9 0’clock, but I don’t take a nap,” she says. “My 
hands won’t let me. I have to get busy doing something.”

“You know, the old saying is, you haven’t lived until you have married, raised 
a son and dug a well,” she muses,  “and I’ve done all three. But I still have 
plenty to keep me busy.”


Fairfield Recorder newspaper - Thursday February 23, 2006 edition

For Vida Whiteside. . .
Family celebrates birthday

A surprise party honoring the ninetieth birthday of Vida Jane Whiteside 
took place Saturday at Cornerstone Baptist Church in Fairfield.
Mrs. Whiteside was born Vida Jane Lancaster on February 9, 1916 in Dew 
and graduated from Dew high school in 1934. She has lived her whole life 
in Freestone county and moved to Fairfield 61 years ago.

Mrs. Whiteside married William Oscar Whiteside on February 8, 1936 - 
the day before her twentieth birthday - and has five children; four boys 
and one girl ranging in age from 61 to 52. She also has 12 
grandchildren, 20 great grandchildren and 6 great great grandchildren.
After working in a sewing factory in Fairfield for several years, Mrs. 
Whiteside started her own sewing business at Second Acre, which she ran 
for five years. Although an injury prevented her from continuing her 
business, she still likes to sew and does alterations from time to time.
She also loves to read the Bible and the local newspapers.

Gleanings from Freestone County History....

Written by Karen Leidy
This year's Go Texan Quilt winner, Cynthia Allen, is passing on the  art to
her grandkids as 6-year-old Parker and 9 year old Emory each took
 First Place for their quilted piece at Freestone County's Home and
 Garden Show.

Although she has been sewing since she was 9 years old, Cynthia
 says she has beenquilting for only 10-12 years.  "I enjoy the creativity, " 
she says.  

Cynthia says she was inspired to try it, as her mom, Wanda Sheram of
Athens, has always been a quilter.

This year's entry took several months to complete, according to Cynthia,
who says the size and amount of detailing determines how long a quilting
 project may take.Her winning entry will represent Freestone County at the 
Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.

Is anyone missing???....Please let me know....there's plenty of  room for another quilt or quilt maker...
we don't want to leave anyone out....

Sherry Ann

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