Amish Treasures in Manhattan

By Kirsten Rohrs Schmitt.

Head for New York City to view one of the country’s most significant Amish quilt collections.

Lone Star quilt, 75 3/4" x 73 3/4".
An anonymous Amish quilter in Ohio made this cotton Lone Star quilt between 1925 and 1935.

Crazy Patch, 88" x 75".
In 1903, Leah Zook Hartzler made this sophisticated and restrained version of the familiar Victorian pattern on the occasion of her sister Lydia’s wedding to Daniel J. Yoder, in Mifflin County, Pennsylvania. The wool and cotton patches are outlined with herringbone stitches in a variety of colored cotton embroidery thread. The corners of each block are anchored with pumpkin-colored squares, forming four patches amidst the free-form shapes.

Center Star with Corner Stars, 76 3/4" x 82 1/2".
Strong colors, unusual borders, and original piecing are the hallmarks of Amish quilts from Arthur, Illinois, as in this one made by a member of the Glick family sometime between 1890 and 1900. The wool quilt has cotton backing and is stitched with cross-hatching and Amish waves in the borders.

The American Folk Art Museum's Midwestern Amish quilts are on rotating view at the Lincoln Center branch in the Eva and Morris Field Gallery, 2 Lincoln Square at Columbus Avenue between 65th and 66th streets. A few quilts from the main collection are always on view at the Museum of American Folk Art, 45 West 53rd St., New York, NY 10019, 212-265-1040. For more infomation, visit www.folkartmuseum.org. To read more about the museum, purchase American Anthem: Masterworks from the American Folk Art Museum, by Stacy C. Hollander, Brook Davis Anderson, and Gerard C. Wetkin, published by the American Folk Art Museum in association with Harry N. Abrams, 2001.

This article can be found in the May/June 2007 issue of Love of Quilting.

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