Blocks of Hope and Healing Participate in a Community Quilting Project Institute for American Indian Studies

The Institute for American Indian Studies has just announced a new quilting project for the month of May called “Blocks of Hope and Healing.” This community-quilting project is a way to support and bring attention to the MMIWG2S epidemic. MMIWG2S is an abbreviation for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, and 2-Spirit People, respectively.

Quilting serves as a testament to heritage and history, with each piece offering encouragement and solace. Quilts connect us to the world around us and are often symbolic of hope and comfort by providing physical and emotional warmth. The concept of this community-made quilt will be used to honor and remember the plight of missing and murdered Indigenous women, girls, and 2- Spirit People.

The Institute is inviting the public to become part of this important global movement by participating in two Quilt Workshops on Saturday, May 14, and Sunday, May 22 @ 11 a.m. that will be conducted by Education Director, Director Darlene Kascak (Schaghticoke Tribal Nation). If you don’t have much experience sewing, no worries, Kascak, will be there to walk you through the process. If you don’t complete your quilt package during the workshop, you can complete it in the comfort of your own home as long as you return it to the Institute by Wednesday, June 1, 2022.

All participants in this project are asked to make a $25 donation to the National Indigenous Women’s Rights Council (NIWRC). The Institute will give all participants a quilt block packet, complete with all necessary materials and instructions for creating your section of the community quilt. Please call (860) 868-0518 or email events@iaismuseum.org to reserve your section on this community quilt, sign up for one of the quilting workshops, or if you have any questions about this initiative.
Donations to NIWRC can be made at the following link: https://www.niwrc.org/donate.

About MMIWG2S
MMIWG2S refers to initiatives intended to address the ongoing violence and continued genocide of women, girls, and Two-Spirits. Each year thousands of Native American women and children go missing or are found murdered in the United States and Canada. Gaps in data make the true scope difficult to estimate, but some sources suggest that the total number of cases may approach 10,000.

About The Institute for American Indian Studies
Located on 15 acres of woodland acres the Institute For American Indian Studies preserves and educates through archeology, research, exhibitions, and programs. They have a 16th c. Algonquian Village, Award-Winning Wigwam Escape, and a museum with temporary and permanent displays of authentic artifacts from prehistory to the present that allows visitors to foster a new understanding of the world and the history and culture of Native Americans. The Institute for American Indian Studies is located on 38 Curtis Road, Washington, CT.

Quintessential Quilts at the Danbury Museum and Historical Society

The Danbury Historical Society’s exhibit called Quintessential Quilts runs through November 1 and focuses on the amazing collection of handmade quilts in the museum’s collection. The exhibition opens with the roots of the craft in the 18th and 19th centuries and moves on to highlight the rising popularity of quilt making as an artistic endeavor in the 20th century.

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All the quilts on display were made between the 18th and 19th century by the local citizens of Danbury area and tells a story of the people of this that made them.

One particularly interesting quilt, crafted by sisters Laura and Flora Morgan of Bethel was made from Danbury hat factory scraps and is known as the “crazy quilt”. This particular piece is believed to have been made between 1875 and 1910. Laura Morgan was employed by a Danbury hat factory and was allowed to bring home silk lining scraps. Together the sisters added these to a variety of velvets: cut, uncut, and voided. The scraps were pieced together on foundation fabric and made nine blocks embellished with beads, embroidery, and sequins. It is thought that this quilt was a gift from these two unmarried sisters to their helpful cousin.

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In conjunction with this quilt exhibition, the Danbury Museum and Historical Society is hosting several movies and lectures on quilting. On August 9 at 2 p.m. the movie, Quiltmakers of Gee’s Bend will be shown in Huntington Hall; admission is free and the public is welcome to attend.

On August 16 there will be a quilting fabric swap from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. There is a $10 admission at the door for this fun fabric exchange.

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The quilting fun continues in September with a free movie on Art of Quilting beginning at 2 p.m. in Huntington Hall on the campus of the Historical Society.

On October 25, a few days before this exhibition comes to a close, there will be a lecture by Sue Reich, a well known quilt expert. The lecture is free and will begin at 2 p.m. in Huntington Hall. The focus of the lecture will be quilts and quilt makers covering Connecticut.

The Danbury Museum and Historical Society located on 43 Main Street in Danbury is open Wed. – Fri. 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. and Sat. 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. For addition information visit http://www.danburymuseum.org.

For area information www.litchfieldhills.com

Feast Of Colorful Quilts Awaits In Norwalk, Connecticut

Those who love the homespun beauty of quilts have a feast in store, as seven local arts and cultural institutions join in a unique collaboration to form the Norwalk Quilt Trail, a series of exhibits from May through mid-November in Fairfield County, Connecticut.

The Quilt Trail spotlights 100 quilts made and collected in Norwalk. Together, the colorful quilts tell the story of the life and the changing fortunes of this area, from the early 1800s to the maritime era in the mid-1850s to 1900s machine age to the present.

The settings for the exhibits also represent many eras, from the Rowayton Historical Society’s Pinkney House (c. 1820) to the Stepping Stones Museum for Children, which opened in 2000. The full list includes the Norwalk Historical Society, the Norwalk Museum, Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum, the Sheffield Island Lighthouse, and the SoNo Switch Tower Museum. Related exhibits will be presented at City Hall and local libraries. Each exhibit has a story to tell.

A VARIETY OF THEMES

A Common Thread: Family History Told through Quilting at the Rowayton Historical Society illustrates how quilts chronicled family life, telling stories of family love, loss and community in embroidered, patchwork and appliqué quilts, including a signature quilt from one of Norwalk’s oldest families, the Raymonds. The influences introduced during the boom years of Norwalk’s oystering and shipping trade can be seen in a nineteenth century red and white Hawaiian quilt. Two nineteenth century ribbon quilts made from hatbands, ribbons and clothing tags manufactured in the factories of Norwalk represent the changes wrought by the machine age, while yo-yo quilts from the 1930’s show the mood during the period after World War I. (May 15-November 11 http://www.rowaytonhistoricalsociety.org or 203-831-0136).

The Norwalk Historical Society will show Collected & Cherished: Quilts made and collected in Norwalk featuring quilts made from 1850 to 1950, including log cabin designs in silk, baskets-and-wreath designs in cotton. Of special interest from Norwalk’s early seafaring days is the Mariner’s Compass quilt designed by a sea captain, Charles Selleck, and pieced by his wife Samantha in 1860. Six of the Society’s own rare quilts have been restored, thanks to a grant from the Coby Foundation and Gail Wall. (May 14-October 10. http://www.norwalkhistoricalsociety.org or 203.846.0525)

The Craze of Crazy Quilts, a display of a style popular in the latter 19th century, is on view in the Music Room of the 1864 Lockwood-Mathews House (May 14-October 16; http://www.lockwoodmathewsmansion.com or 203-838-9799), while Against the Elements: Keeping Warm at the Lighthouse at the Sheffield Lighthouse displays vintage quilts from private collections along with three quilts that are permanently on display in bedrooms in the 10-room 1868 lighthouse to show what life was like for the families of 19th century light keepers. (weekends May 28-June 26, daily June 27-September 5; http://www.seaport.org or 203-838-9444).

The charming Quilts Made by Norwalk Children from the 1970s to Today will be on display at the Stepping Stones Museum for Children (June 30-October 10; 203-899-0606 or steppingstonesmuseum.org) while Trains, Planes and Automobiles, featuring quilts with transportation themes showing the impact of transportation technology on American life will be at the SoNo Switch Tower Museum. The museum is housed in the original Signal Station 44, built in 1896 (May 14-October 30; http://www.westctnrhs.org or 203- 246.6958.

More information on the exhibits can be found at http://www.norwalkquilttrail.org. For information about other nearby events a free color guide to attractions, lodging and dining in Fairfield County, contact the Western Connecticut Convention and Visitors Bureau, PO Box 968, Litchfield, CT 06759, (860) 567-4506, http://www.visitwesternct.com.