“Civil War Era Quilts from the Illinois State Museum”
During the war, quilts meant so much more than marriage gifts.
Before television, young middle-class women spent the evenings undertaking the herculean task of creating five quilts for their marriage. But “Civil War Era Quilts from the Illinois State Museum” at the Thompson Center shows how, during the war, the meticulously wrought objects meant so much more than marriage gifts: Comfort for an orphaned daughter, “log-cabin-style” solidarity with an abolitionist President, and soothing monotony for a wounded soldier cutting 14,320 fabric pieces for his wife. While biographical labels confuse at times with insidery war jargon, most stories are almost as lovingly pieced together as the 20-plus quilts.