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Historically Fort Bend:
The Lasting Legacy of Quilts

The quilt made in 1906 by the ladies of the former Christian Church of Rosenberg.

The quilt made in 1906 by the ladies of the former Christian Church of Rosenberg.


A silk crazy quilt made by Mrs. P. H. Manaker of Fulshear out of silk linings from men’s hats.

By Chris Godbold

Making a quilt has long been a way to pass the time. Women have spent many hours of free time sewing patches together to form tangible legacies of love for their families. Quilts were used for warmth, as door or window covers, and even as floor mats. Quilting was also a good exercise in recycling and reusing as squares were often cut out of garments, blankets or other textiles that had outlived their usefulness.

Sometimes these are solo projects and other times quilt work provides an opportunity for a social gathering. Ladies come together to have refreshments, sew on a quilt and share the news of the day. The quilting bee could be an afternoon get together or an all-day affair. These quilting rituals have been going on since ancient times.

Quilts can also be fundraisers. In 1906, the ladies of the Christian Church of Rosenberg, now Central Christian Church, sold patches on a quilt they were making to raise money for the church. Each patch sold for 50 cents and the donor’s name was embroidered on the patch; 103 donors bought patches for the quilt. After the quilt was finished, it was bought by John Cooper, a local carpenter and contractor, for $25. In 1906, $25 was a hefty sum. Compare that to a sewing machine which could be bought from Sears, Roebuck for under $15 and a parlor suite for under $20.

John Cooper gave the quilt to his daughters. It is now in the collection of the Fort Bend Museum. It is 6 feet square and has patches of various fabrics and colors.

Historical facts and photos courtesy of the
Fort Bend County Museum Association, Richmond, TX



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