Saturday, September 10, 2011

Railroad Quilt Block

     This 9" Railroad quilt block is made up of squares and half square triangles.  I found the pattern in The Farmer's Wife Sampler Quilt by Laurie Aaron Hird but sized it up from 6" to 9" finished.    
     In these diary entries, my grandmother is preparing for and going on a train trip to visit her younger brother Howard in Manhattan, 95 miles away, where he is in pre-college.  The Friday, February 18 entry is the first one to mention my grandfather and Harriet's future husband - Frank George.  In the Saturday, February 19 entry, the Katy is a smaller, second class railroad.  A jitney is a small motor vehicle that transports passengers on a route for a small fare, usually a nickel.

Thursday, February 17, 1916 -
"I'd better get to bed as I was dreadfully sleepy this A.M.  It has been another beautiful spring day, and I hope it continues until my trip to Manhattan is over.  Papa says I'd better go Saturday A.M. as I cannot make train connections going Friday evening, and I can hardly get ready by tomorrow A.M.  So I have written Howard, and Orv took up the letter tonight.  I have done quite a bit today.  Besides a little housework and 'hafting to churn,' I washed my hair, hemmed my new middy tie, and did several other little things.  But I have a busy day ahead, too, so I must turn in."

Friday, February 18, 1916 -
"I have had a thousand and one jobs to do today, and I am even leaving a few to do in the A.M.  It is after eleven now.  I'd better go to bed, or I won't have any 'morning' to do anything before I go.

"Ethel did most of the cleaning, but I helped a little - dusted my room, baked some gingerbread, ironed a couple of pieces, and washed the separator - all before dinner.  Frank George and Mr. Fulk were here for dinner.  I have been sewing steadily ever since it seems - but, of course, have done other things intermittently.  Anyhow, I'm ready for bed!!"

Saturday, February 19, 1916 -
"I am writing this account on Sunday because I had such a splitting headache last night that it was all I could do to hold my eyes open, let alone write anything.  I don't know why - I never do have the headache, but I think my ride on the Katy was probably responsible for this one.  I didn't get to bed very early Friday night, then got up pretty early the next A.M. and tore around getting my suitcase packed, etc. 

"Griffie was going home so was on the train as far as Emporia with me.  Lela Roberts and Ruth Jones got on at Lebo and were with us, too.  Grace's train was at the Katy depot when we were at Emporia Junction, so she had to wait until P.M.  She went with me to do a little shopping until time for my train.  Of course, mine was late, and the whistle had blown before we left Emporia.  It was terribly stuffy and hot on that delightfully bumpy road, and I thought I'd never get here.  I finally got the interurban out of Junction City, and the ride over from there was about as uncomfortable except that I enjoyed the scenery.

"I was sure glad to see Howard, and we had a coke about the first thing, then took a jitney up here.  After I had washed and combed my hair and gone to supper, I felt better.  Clema Gordon, the girl who lives here, is sharing her room with me.

"We took in the Oratorial contest, which was splendid, but I contracted the worst headache imaginable.  They did a great deal of yelling, and the whole affair was quite exciting and, of course, entertaining."

You might enjoy reading my previous post:

suemac said...
Hard to imagine a world without cars. We are spoiled.
September 9, 2011

Julie Fukuda said...
I love that tidy little block and the diary is so interesting. When I was a kid in school, history was a boring subject with lots of memorizing names and dates (which I could never do as a severe dyslexic). When I finally figured out how to read, this is the kind of thing that most attracted me. You can almost put yourself there.
I was in
Japan when my mother's things were divided up among my siblings. One sister took all the diarys but has never shared one word from them with me. Maybe after reading these I will work up the nerve to ask for some ... at least, the ones that were written before she was born...


  1. I remember taking the train home from Kansas University in the '40's. It was right after World War II and there were not many cars. Just before Christmas the train was full of KU students going home. It stopped at every little town. We sang and had a great time all the way.

  2. I love all your blocks. Will you be piecing them into a quilt or keeping them separate with each diary entry?

  3. I plan on piecing them into a quilt that I'm calling my Farmer's Dauaghter Quilt.


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