This 12" Gold Nuggets quilt block is the sixth block of my Irish Great Grandfather Sampler Quilt. I found the pattern for it at Block Base. A note said that the center should be yellow. There are four Y seams in this block, so I hesitated making it. I'm glad I did, though. It wasn't as bad as I expected it to be. I sewed all four green diagonal seams first and then stitched around all four sides of the yellow square.
While my maternal grandmother was still in high school, she interviewed her father, James Lynch, at the urging of her older brother Will, who was living in China at the time. (Read his letter to her here.) Later, she wrote a biography of her father from the notes she'd taken during the interview. Following is the sixth part of this biography:
"They (James and brothers Thomas and Patrick) panned gold around Sutter's Mill (Coloma), Yuba City and Marysville. Life was dangerous, and robbing and killing for gold were common. Supplies were scarce and expensive. A plug of tobacco was five dollars and boots fifteen dollars. Gamblers took over. James panned almost $2000 in gold nuggets and gravel. He kept it in a leather pouch tied around his waist at all times. His brothers had almost as much as he did but lost it all when the bank president left for New York with all the depositors' money.
"In 1859, James and his brothers returned by the same route to New York. James then went to Illinois where he got work as a farm hand."
- by Hazel Lynch Skonberg, James Lynch's daughter
Are you interested in reading more about my Irish Great-Grandpa Sampler Quilt? You'll find it all right here.
You might also enjoy reading my previous blog post here.