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"Exercisers" Quilt

Pearlie Posey, American, 1894 - 1984

Made in United States, North and Central America


Cotton and polyester; running stitch

6 feet 7 1/2 inches × 64 3/4 inches (201.9 × 164.5 cm)

Research inconclusive. Copyright may apply.

Curatorial Department:
Costume and Textiles

Object Location:

Currently not on view

Accession Number:

Credit Line:
The Ella King Torrey Collection of African American Quilts, 2006

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A resident of Yazoo City, Mississippi, Pearlie Posey used templates made by her daughter, Sarah Mary Taylor, for her own appliqué quilts and, because of failing eyesight, relied on her to cut out the shapes. She liked to mix the figures in each block and connect them with strips of colorful fabric. Posey traced the gymnasts on this quilt from a pantyhose advertisement; she copied the central figure in a coat from another advertisement. She learned to quilt from her grandmother, a former slave, and continued to quilt throughout her life. She remembered that during her childhood piecing and quilting were community activities. Families would get together to tear up old clothes and overalls for quilt tops and on Sunday mornings the women would gather at one house to quilt.