Black History Month and for the people that live in Oakville it is very significant.
Captain Robert Wilson was a Great Lakes ship captain who operated out of Oakville. His schooner the Lady Colborne carried grain on the Great Lakes and amongst his cargo were American Slaves that very lucky enough to make it to Ashtabula, Ohio and get passage on the ship back to Oakville and to freedom.
James Wesley Hill was another individual who helped the slaves escape, who arrived in Oakville around the 1850's. He eventually built a house here in Town and it still stands to this day.
He was once a slave himself and when he finally was able to pay his owner, he did so. His story can be read here:
I am fortunate to have a friend by the name of Susan who introduced me to this part of the Town’s Heritage back in 2008 when Charleen and I were doing workshops and Susan suggested we teach the Underground Railroad Quilt to several ladies of the guild.
How does all this tie in to what is coming next? The slaves originally came from Africa and for the month of February the most outstanding quilt is on display at The Oakville Museum.
The Threads of Africa quilt was the brainchild of Renske Helmuth, a lady that I met years ago while taking one of her classes. The story behind the quilt is extremely interesting and I’ll give you a condensed version.
After travelling to Africa with her husband, Renske came home with fabric and beads and ideas brimming in her head.
With Renske at the helm, ladies from The Waterloo Quilters Guild took on the enormous task of creating a work of art.
The finished quilt measures 96” x 96” and is now proudly owned by Len’s Mill Stores (http://www.lensmill.com/Quilt-Gallery.htm)
If you would like the full story behind the quilt you can click on here.
If you would like to see the quilt in all its beauty, you can drop into the Oakville Museum at the foot of Navy Street in Oakville, starting February 4
Hours are Tuesday to Sunday…………..1:00 until 4:30
Phone number for more information is:
Would you love to see some eye candy???? Remember, it is better to see it in person.
You can click on each individual photo to see the detail in each block. They really are magnificent.
|Photos by Susan S.|
I snapped these two photos while I was there. Honestly, if you can, go and see this quilt. Absolutely amazing!