By: Kathleen L. Moore
Could two strikingly similar quilts found by chance in Texas and Georgia state quilt documentation books and identified as belonging to two different families have been made by the same maker? Research on these two quilts found separate journeys but amazing coincidences in their histories. Investigation into state documentation projects and the Quilt Index uncovered several more quilts of similar design. The study of these quilts revealed a previously unknown cluster of unique quilt block designs narrowly confined in origin to the southeastern corner of Tennessee and northwestern corner of Georgia in the third and fourth quarters of the nineteenth century. This case study of regional tastes and design aesthetics additionally illustrates historical truths of nineteenth-century American quilt survival and migration, as the quilts traveled with their owners—possibly crossing paths in post-Civil War Texas.