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Topic: Underground railway quilts  (Read 946 times)
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Stephannie
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« on: November 23, 2005 11:35:14 AM »

I work at a heritage museum sometimes and have been making quilts revelant to explaining the underground railway.  I found this link and thought it might be of some interest.

http://educ.queensu.ca/~fmc/may2004/Underground.html
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« Reply #1 on: November 23, 2005 11:38:20 AM »

That's really amazing! Thanks for sharing! I love crafts that have meaning and history behind them.
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cmoore
« Reply #2 on: November 27, 2005 01:22:40 PM »

Unfortunately, all research done into that claim have turned up no evidence that it was true.  It looks more and more like a legend as time goes on. More info about that is here.
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« Reply #3 on: November 27, 2005 02:35:21 PM »

Fact or legend, it is still an amazingly interesting use of quilts-- perhaps not so far from the truth becasue of the use of songs....
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« Reply #4 on: November 27, 2005 05:52:20 PM »

sometimes the legend & iconagraphy & symbolism are what's important anyway. I still think it's neat, either way.
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« Reply #5 on: November 27, 2005 08:58:05 PM »

sometimes the legend & iconagraphy & symbolism are what's important anyway. I still think it's neat, either way.
I agree, legend is extremely important to cultures too.
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cmoore
« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2005 02:51:31 PM »

Legends are interesting and fun to hear-as long as they are not taught as if they are true.
It's fine as a 'what-if' kind of scenario, provided people are made aware that this may (and even probably) has no basis in fact, and no one seems to have claimed it did for a hundred years.
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« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2005 05:57:27 PM »

See, as a Master's Student in American History, there are several historians that I work with that study quilts and the Underground railway... So, I cannot agree with you that they are just legend.
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« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2005 06:05:19 PM »

That above posting seemed kind of snarky... 

Cmoore, if you would like I could PM you a list of reading that I have from one of my Graduate seminars about artisans and slavery... There has been some extensive work on Underground railway codes, and quilting... as the system has been significanty documented.  The website you posted is actually the first that I've seen that attempts to dispute the "Quilt codes."       
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cmoore
« Reply #9 on: December 02, 2005 11:07:52 PM »

You did not sound snarky. Go ahead and send me any info you like.
I admit I am skeptical for a number of reasons, the two foremost being that virtually no-one heard of this until-what-the 1990's (and it has grown since then at an astounding rate) and the code seems far too complex to have worked. If you have anything addressing those concerns, I'd love to see it.
« Last Edit: December 02, 2005 11:10:14 PM by cmoore » THIS ROCKS   Logged
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