Thursday, February 23, 2012

Rocky Road Quilt Block

     I found this 12" Rocky Road block in a book from 1970, Modern Patchwork by Rachel Martens - Farm Journal quilt blocks from the Twenties.  It was a 14" block I reduced down to 12" finished.  
    In Sunday's diary entry, Frank and Hattie are going on a date to the Chautauqua in Burlington, Kansas to see the Ojibway Indians.  Fannie, Frank's sister, and Miss Bertha Hempstead, a week-end guest of the Woodbury family, act as chaperones.  (Miss Hempstead is a newspaper woman from Topeka.)  Hattie drives a car for the first time!
     The Chautauqua Movement flourished in the United States in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.  It included various traveling shows and local assemblies that provided popular education combined with entertainment in the form of lectures, concerts, and plays.  The Movement was modeled after activities at the Chautauqua Institution of western New York (Merriam-Webster On-Line Dictionary).

Sunday, July 23, 1916 -
"This should really be dated Monday as it was 1:30 A.M. when we got in and, of course, I was so dead tired that I didn't open my desk at all. . .

"Frank called up right after dinner and wanted me to go to Burlington to see the Ojibway Indians.  Mother said I must take Miss Hempstead along, so he said there would be plenty of room, and I asked him to come for supper.  We started soon after six and went over and got Fannie.  Then I got in the front seat, and Frank told me to slide over in his place and drive!  Of course, he helped me and, although I made a pretty crooked track part of the time, Frank said I did just fine.  But I don't think I did, for after I had driven several miles, of course hitting every rock in the road, we had a puncture and Frank had to change tires and pump it up, too.  I was more than willing to let him drive the rest of the way, but we were late getting there.  The tent was full, and we had to stand up in the back.  The Indians were good though.  They enacted 'Hiawatha.'  We had to wait a half hour for the garage man to vulcanize the tire, and so we went up to Calvert's a little and to an ice cream parlor to kill time.  It was after eleven when we left Burlington, and we had a little trouble with something in the engine making a very nerve-racking squeaking sound.  Frank tried several times to fix it, but he couldn't.  But sometimes if we would hit a bump quite hard, it would stop for a while.  I was quite sleepy, and my neck was almost stiff by the time we got in.  Miss Hempstead and Fanny had slept between bumps most of the way home.  Although it was 1:30, Mother woke and told us she had left some watermelon in the refrigerator for us, so we went down and ate it then.  It was about two when I finally crawled in."

Monday, July 24, 1916 -
"I broke the news of my driving very gently to Mother tonight.  I didn't intend to tell her until I was thoroughly accomplished, but I only gave her an idea.  I didn't tell her we had a puncture." 

You might also enjoy reading my previous blog entry:


  1. I felt every bump, heard the squeak, and tasted the watermelon!! Always, always, always look forward to your posts!! Lovely block too!!!

  2. My Grandparents used to go to Chautauqua New York every summer.
    The block is just perfect.

  3. the block is gorgeous, and the black fabric with the pebbles - quite appropriate. I loved the part about how she left the part out about the flat tire. Some things never change do they? Sounds like something any one of us or our children would do now. Great story.


I love hearing from readers. Your comments make my day!