Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Block 28. A Stitch in Time

by Terry Thornton

A stitch in time. . . Block 28 of the circa 1931 Friendship Quilt in the Museum of the Itawamba County Historical Society

McFERRIN, Effie, Block 28

The 1930 census of Mantachie lists this farming family on the Tupelo-Guntown Road: head-of-household, Effie McFerrin, 40, widowed; sons Willie T., 14, Cornis B., 11, and Cormon W., 6; father-in-law King L. McFerrin, 70 (born in Alabama) and mother-in-law Emma McFerrin, 69.

According to Kermit McFerrin, Effie McFerrin was born in Lee County and lived in Mantachie until her death, January 10, 1954. She was married to Eddie McFerrin and was the mother of three boys: Clovis McFerrin who died in 1933; Willie who died in 1996; and Carmon who died in 1995. She was a member of the Mantachie Methodist Church.

MOORE, Vonna, Block 28

According to IHS member Joe Sheffield, the given name is usually spelled Vona.

Vona Moore, 30, is listed on the 1930 census as the wife of cattle dealer Howard Moore, 32, of Highway 25, Shannon, Lee County. Howard and Vona had two children listed with them: Earl, 4, and James, 2.

Howard Moore was the son of William S. and Rhoda L. Moore, farmers of Beat 5, Itawamba County.

The SSI Death Index lists Vona Moore, April 4, 1900 - September 1975 whose last residence was in Mantachie.

If you have additional information about any of the names on this quilt square, please post a comment below. Your help is needed to "write" the story of this almost eighty-year old quilt.

A stitch in time . . . The 2010 Friendship-Memory Quilt

The quilt block featured above shows the handwork done by the quilters of the Mantachie Methodist Episcopal Church South in the early 1930s. A square of fabric was used as the foundation and a fabric bird was appliquéd to the square. The appliqué was done by hand using what some call a blanket stitch. Details on the bird were added using running stitches and French knots. Each square was different as each worker brought her own skills to the square and worked to put the bird firmly in place with a variety of appliqué/embroidery stitches. Running stitches were used to embroider the names; some of the names were done in manuscript; others were done in cursive writing.

The 2010 quilt inspired by this older quilt will also feature birds appliquéd to a square of white. Whereas the 1930s squares were not "set" together with slashing, the new one will feature bands of blue around each square with a small red square forming the corners.

Won't you join the 2010 Friendship-Memory Quilt project of the Itawamba Historical Society. Subscribe your name, your immediate family names, the names of your ancestors, or the name of your business. Help preserve the time-honored art of making friendship quilts and help promote the work of the Society at the same time.

Contact: Itawamba Historical Society, PO Box 7, Mantachie MS 38855, telephone 662-282, 7664, or come by the Office of the Society at the Corner of Church Street and Museum Drive, Mantachie.


Family information from Memories from Itawamba County: A Friendship Quilt circa 1931 --- A Stitch in Time by Terry Thornton with assistance from Members of the Itawamba Historical Society, Itawamba Settlers, Quarterly Journal of the Itawamba County, Mississippi, History and Genealogy. Winter 2009, Pages 143-61.

Square from 1931 Friendship Quilt photographed by Terry Thornton, September 3, 2009, Bond's House Museum, Itawamba Historical Society, Mantachie, Mississippi.

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