Sunday, 30 March 2014

Boston Pilgrims

Boston today
To the south of Lincolnshire lies Boston. In the middle of this historic town is the church called The Stump, which can be seen for miles across the fenland area. Inside are momuments to Reverend John Cotton, who led members of his congregation to the New World and became the first pastor of Shawmut, Massachusetts, which was later renamed Boston in honour of their far away home in Lincolnshire.

detail of seagulls, Green Star Quilts
 The Pilgrim Fathers set sail from our south coast in 1620 at the height of the storm season and sailed for two months before they landed on the other side of the Atlantic. The drawing shows what a scary and dangerous journey it must have been.

The Mayflower

Another memorial is at Fishtoft on the north bank of The Haven river.

Pilgrim Fathers memorial at Fishtoft
What a long journey to the New World and what hope of new beginnings the pilgrims must have had and what sights they must have seen on the way.....

detail of dolphins Green Star Quilts

Detail for Calan's quilt, Green Star Quilts

I wonder about those pilgrims, especially the women. What did they pack? What did they expect to find when they arrived? How hard it must have been to leave their friends and families. How much space did they have to take precious things....

Vintage coffee pot on 'Whitby' fabric tea towel
Did they take seeds, hoping to grow new gardens?

Could they take livestock to start their farms?

hen and chicks
I have just finished reading The Last Runaway by Tracy Chevalier  about a pilgrim who journeyed to America in 1850, such a good book, I couldn't stop thinking about Honor Bright afterwards. She was a quilter too. When I look at the equipment I have to produce quilts and think of these women who made quilts by the light of oil lamps without rotary cutters, electric sewing machines, irons, specialist rulers.... the list could go on and on... I am humbled by their beautiful quilts which can still be seen today. This summer I will definitely be visiting the American Museum at Bath. 

Thanks for dropping in, I know some of you live in America and Canada, so welcome to Lincolnshire for a few minutes. I hope you have a lovely week and Happy Mothers Day to all who nuture families, friends, neighbours and even care for strangers,


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Happy quilting everyone!