Cobblestone Museum offering virtual program on ‘Dear Jane Quilt’

By Ginny Kropf, correspondent Posted 20 March 2023 at 11:35 am

Provided photo: This is a Stickle quilt, also known as a Dear Jane quilt, made by Carole Patterson of Albion. The Stickle Quilt will be the topic of a program at the Cobblestone Museum on March 30, in celebration of Women’s History Month. The public is invited to a virtual (Zoom) presentation from 7 to 8 p.m. at the Thompson-Kast Visitors Center.

CHILDS – A program scheduled by the Cobblestone Museum at the Thompson-Kast Visitors Center is a must-see event for all quilt makers and lovers of quilts, said Sue Bonafini, assistant director of the Cobblestone Society.

The public is invited to a virtual presentation (Zoom) from 7 to 8 p.m. March 30 by Callie Raspuzzi, collections manager at the Bennington Museum in Bennington, Vt.

Limited seating will be available at the Thompson-Kast Visitors Center across from the Cobblestone Museum. Pre-registration is required by calling the Cobblestone Museum at (585) 589-9013.  A Zoom link will be sent to registered participants on March 29. Cost is a $5 to $20 sliding scale fee.

Most commonly referred to as the “Dear Jane Quilt,” the Stickle quilt was made in the small town of Shaftsbury, Vt. in 1863 during the Civil War by Jane A. Stickle.

She completed more than 169 blocks in 1863. She had married Walter Stickle sometime before 1850. She did not have any children, but looked after at least three children in her neighborhood. In the 1860s, Stickle was 43 and living alone on a farm, during which time she was creating the Dear Jane quilt as a reminder of the turbulent times the country was going through at the time. She carefully embroidered the words “In War Time 1863 into the quilt.

The original quilt contained a total of 5,602 pieces. The quilt has inspired books, exhibits and quilters all over the world, Bonafini said.

One of those quilters is Carole Patterson of Albion, whose Stickler quilt hangs in her stairway. She has been quilting since 1986 and first became interested in the Stickler quilt when she read a book about it in 2002.

“I worked on it a good part of the year, including the whole winter,” she said. “It has Civil War prints and is all hand sewn. I just love piecing .”

Raspuzzi’s illustrated talk will explore the history of the quilt and its maker. It will also use the quilt as a jumping-off point to talk about diverse topics, including female education, the Civil War, country fairs, disability, textile manufacture, poverty and museum collecting.

Raspuzzi has been collections manager at the Bennington Museum since 2004. Her job includes keeping track of the museum’s tens of thousands of objects, photographs, rare books and archival collections and ensuring everything it properly cared and accounted for. She attended Colgate University and earned a master’s degree in museum studies from George Washington University. The program is sponsored by Tompkins Community Bank.