1870 - 1880 Betty West's "Nurse's" Quilt Top


Five 24-inch pieced 8-Pointed Star blocks and four Railroad Crossing blocks were constructed using 27 different printed cottons. This quilt top was made about 1879 by Betty West, who was employed by Leonides C. Campbell and his wife, Mary, as a nurse for their children.

One of the children, Mary C. Watkins, wrote in 1939: “Betty West, our Negro nurse, made this quilt for my brother Kennedy and me. The many stitches made by stiff old fingers showes the real love she had for the two white children entrusted to her care. I treasured the quilt & have kept it all these years in loving memory of her.”

Date Made: 1870-1880

Maker: West, Betty

Location: Currently not on view

Place Made: United States: District of Columbia

Subject: Quilting

See more items in: Home and Community Life: Textiles, Quilts, Textiles, Domestic Furnishings


Exhibition Location:

Credit Line: Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Kennedy C. Watkins

Data Source: National Museum of American History

Id Number: TE.T17773.00AAccession Number: 315496Catalog Number: T17773A

Object Name: quilt

Physical Description: fabric, cotton (overall material)thread, cotton (overall material)Measurements: overall: 87 in x 86 in; 220 cm x 218 cm

Guid: http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ng49ca746a3-c276-704b-e053-15f76fa0b4fa

Record Id: nmah_556581

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