Local

With message, heart, quilts tell so many stories

By Steve Palisin

spalisin@thesunnews.com

This photo shows a “Friendship Quilt,” cross-stitched by a Georgetown group, probably in the 1970s. It’s part of the Georgetown County Historical Society’s first-ever quilt exhibition, the “Lowcountry Quilt Show,” opening Tuesday at the Georgetown County Museum, 120 Broad St., Georgetown, and continuing through April 2.
This photo shows a “Friendship Quilt,” cross-stitched by a Georgetown group, probably in the 1970s. It’s part of the Georgetown County Historical Society’s first-ever quilt exhibition, the “Lowcountry Quilt Show,” opening Tuesday at the Georgetown County Museum, 120 Broad St., Georgetown, and continuing through April 2. Courtesy photo

As works of art, quilts say so much without saying a word.

The Georgetown County Historical Society will mount its first-ever quilt exhibition, the “Lowcountry Quilt Show,” opening Tuesday at the Georgetown County Museum, 120 Broad St., Georgetown, and continuing through April 2.

Also, through March 31, the Horry County Museum, 805 Main St., Conway, continues showing the 16 ribbon-winners from its 21st annual Quilt Gala, and a “Quilts of Valor” benefit – an afternoon meal and concert – is noon April 17 at Veterans Cafe & Grille, 3544 Northgate Blvd., Myrtle Beach, in the Northgate Plaza, off S.C. 707 and U.S. 17 Bypass.

Jan McGinty, a volunteer at the Georgetown County Museum, ran her hand over the many fabrics that went into the teamwork to make the landmark the “Lowcountry Quilt Show” represents.

Question | How has planning and participation for this inaugural quilt show by the Georgetown County Historical Society gone? Did a flood – use of that word is in a positive sense – of submissions roll in?

A. | Plans for this quilt show were under way more than a year ago. This is a first-time quilt show event for the museum, so there were a lot of things to consider. Submissions did not roll in and usually don’t, I understand, until the last minute before the deadline, which is a month prior to the show.

Q. | Isn’t any quilt show really the equivalent of going through an art or history museum per se, of cloth and linens, with people’s hearts and personalities woven in the fabric?

A. | A quilt does represent something in one’s life, whether happy or sad. A quilt is a story, and that’s what makes each one unique. Spending time at an exhibit and reading all the stories is fascinating.

Q. | Did any museum personnel walk through the Horry County Museum’s 22nd annual Quilt Gala, Feb. 26-27 at Ocean Lakes Family Campground, near Surfside Beach, or visit other shows across the region, as homework for the Georgetown County Museum's showcase about to unfold?

A. | Debbie Thomas and I spent the day with the Quilt Gala, learning how to set up a show, and we visited the show on opening and back again for takedown. Margo Wollard and the Quilt Gala crew have been so supportive of our efforts. I also visited the quilt show in Charleston, “Lowcountry Threads” by Cobblestone Quilters, on March 5 and gathered more ideas. Karen Kendo of this group has been so helpful in many areas. Quilters are generous people and always willing to share their time and talents.

Q. | In piecing together the museum’s quilt show, what additional tidbits have museum personnel picked up about Georgetown-area and Lowcountry culture?

A. | As a matter of interest, Quilts of Valor will be honoring four veterans from our area on March 28, in conjunction with the Lowcountry Quilt Show. This is an organization that honors and comforts service members and veterans all around the country, with participation in many quilt shows,including ours. Check out the cause at www.qofv.org.

The Lowcountry is rich in history. We are a history museum, and why shouldn’t we expand on the history of quilts, one of the oldest forms of art, dating back to the 1600s? People are interested in history, and why not learn more about textiles?

Q. | Is there a dominant theme, color or pattern across the quilts for this show?

A. | Our dominant theme is “Lowcountry Quilts,” and our “logo,” created by Janet Williams, was taken from a quilt block in our collection on display. It is an English paper pieced block probably dating back to early 1900s and was given to the historical society before the Georgetown County Museum was established in 2005. It came from someone – name unknown – at Woodside Plantation.

No particular colors, themes or patterns for this show. We do not have a challenge quilt. It is of more interest I think to showcase all types.

Q. | What type of quilt in general is guaranteed to soothe your eyes and touch your heart?

A. | That’s a tough question. It depends on the individual as to what is soothing to them. The first two weeks in February, Judy Lilly, a local quilt expert, had an exhibit of her “Landscape Art Quilts” here at the museum, and it was such a pleasant sight every morning I opened the museum and viewed these lovely works of art. It made me smile.

Q. | With the Georgetown County Museum in its new home, for two years already, and such ample space, especially on the first floor, for such special exhibits on dolls, sports, and soon to be, quilts, how do such presentations only build up the historical society's depth, value and service to the community?

A. | It is of great value to be able to host special events in all categories to reach all interests in the community. We also had Jonathan Green, an artist from Charleston, here in September, and local artist Pat Puckett exhibited her oil paintings for two weeks in October. We hope to satisfy interests of all our visitors and members in this community. It is our mission to promote and preserve history for this generation and future generations.

Q. | What other special exhibits are confirmed for the museum calendar in 2016?

A. | Our next exhibit (panels) will be in late summer, titled “Shaping of South Carolina.”

Contact STEVE PALISIN at 843-444-1764.

If you go

WHAT: “Lowcountry Quilt Show”

BY: Georgetown County Historical Society

WHEN: Tuesday-April 2, during museum hours – 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesdays-Fridays, and 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturdays

WHERE: Georgetown County Museum, 120 Broad St., Georgetown

HOW MUCH: Free with admission – $5.

ALSO: Tickets $1 for raffle on April 2 (winner need not be present) of “Georgetown Stitched in History” quilt, reflecting events from past 300 years – June Ross designed the blocks; all blocks were hand appliqued by Paula Getty, Maxi Ladiere, Jill Moore and June Ross, and Moore did the machine quilting and finishing.

INFORMATION: 843-545-7020 or www.georgetowncountymuseum.com

ALSO: Speaking of quilts –

▪ Through March, see the 16 ribbon-winning quilts from Horry County Museum’s 21st annual Quilt Gala, at the museum, 805 Main St., Conway, next to Horry County Memorial Library Conway branch. It’s open 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays, and free. 843-915-5320 or www.horrycountymuseum.org.

▪ “Quilts of Valor” benefit afternoon (www.qovf.org), with all-you-can-eat meal, and music by The Sick Stooges,, noon April 17 at Veterans Cafe & Grille (also home of Mini Military Museum), 3544 Northgate Blvd., Myrtle Beach, in Northgate Plaza, off S.C. 707 at southwest corner at U.S. 17 Bypass, near Dollar General. $10 ages 13 and older, $5 ages 5-12, and free ages 4 and younger. 843-232-8387.

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