all the colors

November 12, 2007

Lilli’s Little Quilt, Part 1

Filed under: antique quilts,quilting — Kathy @ 11:56 am
Tags: ,

I found this little quilt at an estate auction in the summer of 2005. It had been wadded up in the bottom of a box of sewing scraps for who knows how long. Amazingly enough, there was a note pinned to the back of the quilt with a safety pin, which read:

“Great Aunt Lilli Doll quilt, 75 years old in 1960, owner & maker Drusilla Hillman, daughter of D.K. Hillman & Drusilla Hendrich”

I got quite excited because I realized the note dated the quilt to around 1885, and other boxes of sewing scraps at the auction were going for $5. I waited all day almost to the very end of the auction for the box to come up. I was the only one nervously watching that box. As the auctioneer looked through the contents, he saw the little quilt in the bottom and pulled it out and held it up for everyone to see. Then he saw the note on the back, and read it as best he could, but the part about the age of the quilt he could read just fine. My heart sank because I knew then that I was not getting the box for $5, but I decided I was still going to win that box. Several people were bidding against me, and in the end I paid $75, but I got it! Still, I didn’t feel like I had paid too much for the little quilt.

After a little research on the internet (I am so glad that Google corrects spelling errors. I thought the note said “Dausilla.”) I had located records that indicated that Drusilla Hillman was born June 20, 1875 and died March 27, 1892, at the age of 17! I realized that “Lilli” was indeed Drusilla, and she had made the little quilt around the age of 10, but had then only lived a few more years to the age of 17! I felt sad for Drusilla and wondered who she was and what had caused her death. I thought about Drusilla Hillman a lot and wondered about her short life so long ago. I realized that the little doll quilt had been saved as a memento of her, and that it spoke of the love her family had for this child.

At this point in my research on Drusilla and the little quilt, I began to have health problems and put it aside until April of 2006, when it bullied its way back into my consciousness. Come back tomorrow to see a picture of Lilli herself, and learn the rest of her story and the journey of her amazing little quilt!

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2 Comments »

  1. Hi, can’t wait for part 2.

    Comment by Magik Quilter — November 13, 2007 @ 8:11 am | Reply

  2. Several years ago you wrote a blog about Lills baby quilt, and that you were going to lend it to the museum in Logan. Since then Thedora Peterberg my cousin said that you wanted a duplicate to donate. My daugter has a long arm machine and would like to make the quilt, or buy the original. We live in American Fork Ut and were driving to Cache Valley On Sat. 22 May. Could you email us your phone number so we could get together and look at the quilt.
    Paul Helmandollar
    801 244 4527
    helmandollarp@msn.com

    Comment by Paul Helmandollar — May 18, 2010 @ 9:24 am | Reply


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