Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Work in Progress

Since the dawn of time, parents have offered offspring objects from their past.  We refer to them as heirlooms.  Attached to the object comes a story of great importance to the elder.  The offspring then become owners of two gifts, the object and the story.

What if you found yourself in possession of not only one family heirloom but fifty?  All objects possessing unique stories, from different family members, and different time periods.  This is the surprising dilemma faced by Mrs. Elizabeth (Libby) Hollingsworth, one fall afternoon in 1996.

According to Carol Vickers, co-author of Threading the Generations, Libby was just one of thousands of Mississippians who participated in a Mississippi Heritage Association Documentation Day.  Yet, her quilts were the highlight of Vickers two year quest to document and photograph Mississippi quilts.

Libby arrived early that November morning in 1996, with five quilts from her home.  It was a slow day for the Port Gibson event, so Libby went back home and got five more, the set limit.  After documenting those, she returned with five more and by the end of the day had documented 29 of a collection numbering in the fifties.

Authors Mary Elizabeth Johnson (Huff) and Carol Vickers, took Libby’s quilts and created a unique book that tells the story of one family’s Mississippi heritage through a timeline of their family’s quilts.  

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