Members of The Lydia Group, from left, are Gloria Tibbs, Catherine Walker, Faylenn McColeman, Carolyn Humber, Eva Taylor, Sharon Bull and Lynne Crocker. The ladies pose with the completed Grandmother's Flower Garden quilt. (contributed)
Members of The Lydia Group, from left, are Gloria Tibbs, Catherine Walker, Faylenn McColeman, Carolyn Humber, Eva Taylor, Sharon Bull and Lynne Crocker. The ladies pose with the completed Grandmother's Flower Garden quilt. (contributed)

Archived Story

Ladies finish quilt, started in 1939

Published 3:49pm Monday, August 5, 2013

By LAURA BROOKHART / Community Columnist

“A couple of years ago, I got a call from a man, Carl Risch, about finishing a quilt that was started by his grandmother,” Lura Campbell, local quilter and member of Evening Star Quilt Guild, told me.

His grandmother, Lissie Aldridge, who died in 1967, had dated one block of the quilt Feb. 13, 1939.

“From his description, I suspected that what he had was not even a quilt, but just quilt blocks.”

Fellow quilter, Judy Buster, who is knowledgeable about old quilts agreed to assemble the blocks into a quilt top. The pattern is called Grandmother’s Flower Garden.

Buster had to cut hundreds of pieces of hexagons from a white fabric and she worked on assembling the quilt top by hand for almost a year.

Risch then asked Johnson to machine quilt it.

“That would have been like painting a piece of fine antique furniture,” Johnson said, “and I refused to do it.”

Johnson located Faylenn McColeman, who is a member, along with Sharon Bull of Helena, of The Lydia Quilters that took up the task of completing the quilt.

“Carl is very lucky that these women love quilting as much as they do, as no one else would ever spend the number of hours they have on this quilt. Each of the flowers has 60 inches of quilting. None of them would ever do it again, for any amount of money,” Johnson related.

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