Author Talk: "An American Quilt" by Rachel May
While studying objects in a textile collection, May opened a veritable treasure-trove: a carefully-folded, unfinished quilt made of 1830s-era fabrics, its backing containing fragile, aged papers with the dates 1798, 1808, and 1813, the words "shuger," "rum," "casks," and "West Indies" repeated over and over, along with "friendship," "kindness," "government," and "incident." The quilt sent her on a journey to piece together the story of Minverva, Eliza, Jane, and Juba--the enslaved women behind the quilt--and their owner, Susan Crouch. May stitches together a narrative that brings to light to lives of people who worked in northern textile mills, market stalls in Charleston, and even the Caribbean.
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