Wednesday, November 13, 2013

A Precious Old Family Quilt and A Quilt Whispers

This North Carolina Lily Quilt was made by Susanna Cannon Dunmire (my great-great grandmother) for her daughter Caroline Dunmire Lynch (my great-grandmother).  The original colors were turkey red, cheddar, and green with an unbleached muslin background.  The green for the binding as well as the stems and leaves of the flowers has now faded to tan. 

Caroline Dunmire married James Lynch on March 3, 1880.  This quilt was made sometime in the 1870's as a wedding quilt for her. 

James and Caroline Lynch Wedding Photo
A Quilt Whispers
Autumn sunshine dapples the floorboards
of an old clapboard home once filled with family.
Heaped in a darkened corner, discarded
and tattered with age, my grandmother's
quilt awaits a new beginning.
Made of her life and love,
softened from generations of use,
the faded, musty fabric
holds memories inside the seams.
Strong, stoic stitches from her hand
now pull apart, fragile from passing time.

Ready to lend warmth, the quilt
surrounded my father, her firstborn,
gave comfort to other children
absorbed their innocent tears
provided lullabies and loving wisdom
never disappointed, never let down,
always faithful, forever near.

In the shadows of a golden afternoon,
while I drink tea precisely at three,
colored leaves fall from the oak tree outside,
while a whispering wind weaves the story
of simpler times and quieter days
like quilting stitches within the branches.

     by Anna Blake Godbout

This poem comes from Anna's book Journey On: Beauty and Grit Along the Way.  It's available at Covered Treasures Bookstore.

Do you have an old family quilt that is precious to you?  Inquiring minds want to know!  Please answer in the comment section below.

You might also enjoy reading my previous blog post here \.


  1. I love the poem. It goes perfectly with the quilt. Such memories.

  2. I have the quilt that my Great grandmother made and gave to my parents as a wedding gift. It has big blocks, and large sashing strips, and my mother would lay it on the floor for my brother and I to use as 'roads' for our matchbox cars. That quilt was used, and has worn very well.

  3. Love seeing the quilt. This was my husband's great-great grandmother as well.

    1. That is true, Glenda. We share ancestors! Grandma Lynch was also a very good quilter.

    2. My great grandmother's quilt with its scrappy pieces, so perfect and precisely pieced and stitched by hand, makes me feel very close to her. It is the benchmark by which I judge my own progress.

  4. I made my husbands great grandma a crochet blanket many years ago. When she passed away we held a family reunion and got everyone to write a message onto fabric. I then made a quilt with her photo in the middle & backed it with the crochet blanket that was given back to me.
    It is a lovely reminder of her. That was 14 years ago.


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