Audio Recordings "You just keep adding on squares."
Johnson, Geraldine Niva
Around the World Quilts
- "You just keep adding on squares."
- Contributor Names
- Johnson, Geraldine Niva, 1940- (Interviewer)
- Choate, Donna. (Interviewee)
- Choate, Donna. (Creator)
- Created / Published
- Sparta, North Carolina
- Subject Headings
- - Quilting
- - Quilt patterns
- - quilt piecing
- - patchwork quilts
- - hand quilting
- - around the world quilts
- - Ethnography
- - Interviews
- - United States -- North Carolina -- Sparta
- - Donna Choate is an African-American woman who learned to quilt from her mother who was taught to piece quilts by the white family who raised her. Although at the time of the interview Mrs. Choate had not made quilts for several years, she describes the process, both as her mother practiced it and as she had done it herself. Mrs. Choate had made both utility and fancy quilts, for the use of her family, not for sale.
- - Transcription: GJ: Now, let's see that one. / DC: Well / GJ: Is that Around the World quilt? / DC: No, no, I, I don't have Around the World. Yes, yes, yes it is. Well now you start right there with that one piece, then you piece this square come down to right there. And back up here, and you see that seam there? On out there, now that makes a square. From there out here, and down to there, and then from there across here. That makes a square. And the, you just keep adding, just keep adding to that. / GJ: Adding squares / DC: Adding squares, and as you add, it gets longer and longer on each corner, you see. And when I do that all / GJ: How do you plan out your colors now, cause this one has pretty green squares all around the edge. / DC: Well, I had a pattern that I got from a lady in town, a lady I worked for. Her mother was a great quilter and great housekeeper, and I happened to see this quilt on her bed one day. And I asked her about it. She said, well, Donna, take the quilt home with you, 'til you can get it started. And you just keep adding on, you see, just adding on all the time. And first thing you know you've got the quilt done. / GJ: Then you quilted this in what, in straight lines / DC: Yes, I follow these. I couldn't a done that from the back side. I wouldn't know where the squares were. Do it on the, I did all this, now this is all top work. All top work. / GJ: Is this one all quilted by hand? / DC: Every stitch in it. Every stitch in it. So no wonder I had bursitis when spring of the year come. Just reaching out there. And you got to put the quilt in frames, you know. You know about that. Well, see you're reaching out there maybe to the middle of this quilt, and that's putting a lot of strain on this arm. I haven't got over it to this date.
- - For rights information please contact the Folklife Reading Room at http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.afc/folklife.contact
- Sound tape reel : 7 in.
- Call Number
- AFC 1982/009: BR8-GJ-R94
- Source Collection
- Blue Ridge Parkway Folklife Project Collection (AFC 1982/009)
- American Folklife Center
Rights & Access
The Library of Congress is not aware of any U.S. copyright protection (see Title 17, U.S.C.) or any other restrictions in the material in this collection, except as noted below. Users should keep in mind that the Library of Congress is providing access to these materials strictly for educational and research purposes. The written permission of the copyright owners and/or other holders of rights (such as publicity and/or privacy rights) is required for distribution, reproduction, or other use of protected items beyond that allowed by fair use or other statutory exemptions. Responsibility for making an independent legal assessment of an item and securing any necessary permissions ultimately rests with persons desiring to use the item. See our Legal Notices and Privacy and Publicity Rights for additional information and restrictions.
The American Folklife Center and the professional fieldworkers who carry out these projects feel a strong ethical responsibility to the people they have visited and who have consented to have their lives documented for the historical record. The Center asks that researchers approach the materials in this collection with respect for the culture and sensibilities of the people whose lives, ideas, and creativity are documented here. Researchers are also reminded that privacy and publicity rights may pertain to certain uses of this material.
This collection includes materials from the "All-American Quilt Contest" sponsored by Coming Home, a division of Lands' End and Good Housekeeping. The quilt contest winning entries from 1992 to 1996 are displayed with the permission of Coming Home which retains its rights.
Researchers or others who would like to make further use of these collection materials should contact the Folklife Reading Room for assistance.
Please cite the source collection title, collection number, and repository, for example:
Blue Ridge Parkway Folklife Project collection, 1977-1981 (AFC 1982/009), American Folklife Center, Library of Congress
Lands' End all-American quilt collection, 1992-1997 (AFC 1997/011), American Folklife Center, Library of Congress
Rights assessment is your responsibility.
More about Copyright and other Restrictions
For guidance about compiling full citations consult Citing Primary Sources.