The Filson Historical Society Digital Projects

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  • 1936_1_1_1 copy.jpg

    Quilt belonging to Elizabeth Tyler Sturgeon. The quilt has strips of hand-woven cloth believed to have been made locally in Jefferson County, Kentucky, alternating with a commercial indigo print that was imported into the United States. The quilt, the oldest quilt in the Filson's collection, is more than 100 inches long on each side and was completely hand-stitched. Eliza married Thomas Sturgeon in 1816, who died seven years into their marriage in 1822. Eliza then took on the responsibility of managing their farm in addition to rearing her three young sons. Eliza enslaved seven people who provided crucial labor for the success of the farm and household. After her husband died, an unidentified enslaved woman helped Eliza manage the farm. In 1833, Eliza died from cholera leaving her three sons, all under the age of eighteen, to live with her brother.
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