Michigan Quilt Project
Michigan Quilt Project



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The African American Collection

Four Patch variation top
Mary Atkins
c1980
Kalamazoo, Kalamazoo County, Michigan
Cotton, cotton/polyester
76” x 90”
MSUM 7227.2
Photo by KEVA, all rights reserved Michigan State University Museum

Mary Atkins grew up in rural Arkansas and was about eight years old when she learned to quilt from her mother who made quilts for family use. According to Atkins, her mother taught her and her sisters to quilt in order to keep them out of mischief after they finished school or after doing their chores on the family farm. "There was no playing after work, but I'd sit down on a stool and begin piecing."

By Marsha MacDowell from, African American Quiltmaking in Michigan



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