WARREN WELCOMES 1899 CHELSEA CHURCH QUILT INTO THE TOWN by Michelle Bartch

WARREN WELCOMES 1899 CHELSEA CHURCH QUILT INTO THE TOWN by Michelle Bartch

 

WARREN, IL – Saturday, October 13th,manypeoplestoppedinatthe Warren Public Library to check out the newest and oldest heirloom in the town. Pat Schultz stood before the group and gave a fantastic his- tory lesson which started around 120 years ago.

This history was based around her husband’s family Thomas Schultz who had moved to Jo Daviess County around the time when Galena and surrounding areas were well known for the mining being done.

Thomas was a descendent of William Bawden who had moved to this area from Cornwall, England in search of opportunity for new min- ing jobs. Turns out that the family ended up farming instead of mining and were living in Scales Mound around 1865. He had a son named Jesse who married Edith West in 1887.

This couple moved around 1900, when they moved to Wisconsin and then later to Howard County, Iowa in 1915. Despite the family having lived out most of their days in Iowa. The couple insisted on coming back and being buried in Warren, Illinois. The grave of Edith’s father and mother can be found in Nora, Illinois at the Chelsea Cemetary.

This comes to the part of the story that puts all these pieces together,TheRedWorkQuilt!This quilt was given to the Bawden fam- ily in 1899 when they left the area to move to Iowa. This quilt was embor- dered with around 200 names of people from the area and a number of Reverends of the church. These names are beautifully written and each of the 25 squares is very unique and holds many of the names from the local areas history. Some names are written in a design or pattern, circles, flowers and stars adorn this handcrafted gem that has been handed down from generation to generation.

Pat felt that this piece of history had gotten farther and farther from the people who might really appre- ciate it so with the help of Jae Hezlep of Galena, this dream of finding this quilt a new and more suitablehomebecameareality.Jae had visited a Frank Lloyd Wright tour in Iowa that Pat was a part of. The two hit it off and had lunch and chatted about the Jo Daviess County Area and after talking with Mayor Wayne Raisbeck they agreed that Warren would be accepting the quilt as a part of our heritage to be put on display so that this “family tree” can be viewed by the public.

The Chelsea Church in no longer a reality but its story can be seen told in the stitches of this quilt. It is an absolute treasure to be seen as something made out of materials like this are something that doesn’t really stand well in the test of time but this quilt has been taken care of very well and looks as though it has never been used but kept as a memoryoftheBawden’sfamilyand friends that they treasured through- out the years that they spent in Jo Daviess County.

It shows that the kindness that existed in this area that made Jo Daviess County one that they never really wanted to leave and in the end never did. The people who roam the rolling hills give a big thank you to Pat and Jae for making this all happen, the surrounding area is very happy to be able to have a beautiful one of a kind gem that shows the history of our area in a very unique and beautiful way. Stop in and see the quilt for your- self. If your family has been around the area for some time, there is a good chance that they are listed on the quilt.

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