Guild Spotlight: Minnesota Quilters’ Reproduction Project


MQP Chimney Sweep Quilt Reproduction Project
from the website of Minnesota Quilters

Have you ever found an old quilt at a garage sale, estate sale, or in your attic and wonder where it came from and who made it? Minnesota Quilt Project (MQP), a committee of the Minnesota Quilters guild, was recently presented with a quilt that was old but was not in very good shape. There was no label to identify the maker or where it was made.

Lavina Fedderly quilt

MQP member Carolyn Silfow wanted to bring life to the quilt. She first noticed that one of the chimney sweep blocks was inscribed with “Lavina Fedderly, Kilbourne City.” To investigate the date when the quilt was made, Carolyn looked online at and found out that Lavina Lewis was born in 1856 and married Alfred Fedderly in 1878.

This first clue indicated that the quilt was probably made after 1878. Then Carolyn discovered census data revealing that the Fedderlys lived in Kilbourn City, which was platted in the 1850s.

Further research revealed a second clue: Kilbourn City was renamed Kilbourn in 1895. Thus, the quilt was likely made before 1895. The town of Kilbourn was later renamed to Wisconsin Dells in 1931. Lavina and her husband were buried in Wisconsin Dells.

These two clues about the family lead the group to believe that the quilt was likely made between 1878 and 1895. Several members of MQP who are expert quilt historians confirmed that the fabric used in the quilt support this time frame.

MQP is leading a project to reproduce this quilt using the same Chimney Sweep block. Members of MQP and Minnesota Quilters are making the blocks. The original tattered quilt and the reproduced quilt will be displayed side by side at the Minnesota Quilters, Inc. 37th Annual Quilt Show & Conference , June 11-13, 2015 in Duluth. fedderly old block

fedderly new block

Would you like to see the blocks and their reproductions? Go HERE and scroll to the bottom of the page. Fascinating! CLICK HERE for the pattern that they used to make the blocks.

Thanks to Minnesota Quilters for sharing the story of this remarkable project!


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Vivian Gerk

When I clicked on the link for the pattern, a new website popped up instead of the pattern — “gator –access forbidden.”
I hope you can find a way to make this pattern available.


Vivian, I’ll have to get someone to check on this. I got the same error page. Thanks for letting us know. Sylvia Thomas, AQS Social Media Manager.

Sally Dwyer

I received a similar quilt top made in the 1800’s with 3 different colored shirting fabrics all in the same design. I thought it might be called Chimney Sweep?
Sally D in Alaska

Cathy Prentice

If you click on the Go HERE link, it will take you to a valid site with a different link to get the pattern.