1853 - 1860 Mary Augusta Rigby's "Pinwheel" Pieced Quilt Top

According to family information, Mary Rigby pieced this quilt top when she was six. There is a definite difference in the quality of stitching. Either Mary improved as she worked or she had help with the quilt top. She was about 8 or 9 when her mother died and possibly this activity was designed as a distraction for her. A child’s thimble (TE*T12873) used by Mary is also in the Collection.
Eight-inch blocks, pieced in a “Pinwheel” pattern are set diagonally with plain white triangles. The piecing is done by overcasting, not by a running stitch.
Mary Augusta Rigby was born September 10, 1847 in New York. Her parents were John Hankey Rigby (1819-1853) born in England and Catherine Bentley (1825-1856) born in New York. Mary married Thomas Wintringham (1846-1900) on December 18, 1877. They had two children and lived in San Rafael, California. Mary was active in community causes such as saving the original pear trees from the San Rafael Arcangel Mission. She died in California on September 9, 1945.
Currently not on view
Object Name
date made
Rigby, Mary Augusta
Physical Description
fabric, cotton (overall material)
thread, cotton (overall material)
overall: 92 in x 81 in; 234 cm x 206 cm
place made
United States: New York
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Domestic Furnishings
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Textiles
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Gift of Mrs. William E. Dulin
Additional Media

Visitor Comments

Add a comment about this object

**Please read before submitting the form**

Have a comment or question about this object to share with the community? Please use the form below. Selected comments will appear on this page and may receive a museum response (but we can't promise). Please note that we generally cannot answer questions about the history, rarity, or value of your personal artifacts.

Have a question about anything else, or would you prefer a personal response? Please visit our FAQ or contact page.

Personal information will not be shared or result in unsolicited e-mail. See our privacy policy.

Enter the characters shown in the image.