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Old quilt completes a full circle

What goes around comes around is a common saying.

In the case of a quilt from the 1940s, it surely is true.

Recently, Bobbette Wilkerson brought an old quilt top to the museum. Her father, Robert Bourne, found it among items he had bought at an auction seven or eight years ago. It was left in storage for a long time and was recently found again.

“It has names on most of the squares, but we didn’t know them,” Bobbette said. “So we decided to give it to the museum in memory of my grandparents.”

On the day she took it in, local quilter and museum volunteer Gary Crutchfield happened to be there.

“He recognized the name on one of the squares as the husband of another volunteer, Elizabeth Smith,” said Museum Director Beth Redd.  “We called her, and she knew many of the names were of her husband’s family members.”

“When I heard that, I knew my family was glad to give the quilt to Mrs. Smith,” Wilkerson said.

Smith had the top quilted and plans to let the museum hang it on display.

“I’ve asked all the living family members about it and have a few answers,” Smith said. “An aunt remembers making blocks for it, but not why they were made. She thinks someone asked the family to make the quilt. The handwriting of the names on some blocks is that of Wayne’s mother, Ella Smith, but she doesn’t remember why it was begun, either, ” she added.

The dates on the squares are from the early 1940s, and she thinks the squares were assembled around 1944 since one of the folks named on it was born in 1944.

“We still have no idea how it got to the auction or from whom it got there,” Smith said. “It’s quite a mystery.”