B-roll from The Quilts of Gee's Bend Courtesy of Matt Arnett and Vanessa Vadim Tinwood Media Production, 2002 Atlanta, Georgia

B-roll from The Quilts of Gee's Bend Courtesy of Matt Arnett and Vanessa Vadim Tinwood Media Production, 2002 Atlanta, Georgia

When ARLONZIA PETTWAY, 83, was a girl, in the 1920's and '30''s, quilts were everything. You needed -- maybe six or seven to pile on a cornshuck mattress in cold weather, to hang on the walls, to keep wind from blowing through the gaps between the logs and to spread on the floor, so the children could sit on them when they ate. The hogs under the house would stir up dust, that would float up through chinks in the floor. You didn't want dust in the children's food. (June 2006) photo: Bill…

Made in Gee's Bend

When ARLONZIA PETTWAY, 83, was a girl, in the 1920's and '30''s, quilts were everything. You needed -- maybe six or seven to pile on a cornshuck mattress in cold weather, to hang on the walls, to keep wind from blowing through the gaps between the logs and to spread on the floor, so the children could sit on them when they ate. The hogs under the house would stir up dust, that would float up through chinks in the floor. You didn't want dust in the children's food. (June 2006) photo: Bill…

February 1937. "Negroes at Gee's Bend, Alabama. Descendants of slaves of the Pettway plantation. They are still living very primitively on the plantation." Here we see one of the celebrated Gee's Bend quilts. Medium format nitrate negative by Arthur Rothstein for the Farm Security Administration.

February 1937. "Negroes at Gee's Bend, Alabama. Descendants of slaves of the Pettway plantation. They are still living very primitively on the plantation." Here we see one of the celebrated Gee's Bend quilts. Medium format nitrate negative by Arthur Rothstein for the Farm Security Administration.

martha jane pettway quilt, gees bend

martha jane pettway quilt, gees bend

Loretta Pettway (American b. 1942), Untitled Block and Strip Quilt, Cotton and Polyester, 83" X 68". Chrysler Museum. Photo by Atelier Madeline.

Loretta Pettway (American b. 1942), Untitled Block and Strip Quilt, Cotton and Polyester, 83" X 68". Chrysler Museum. Photo by Atelier Madeline.

Jennie Pettway - Medallion variation - c. 1975 Cotton, rayon, polyester, corduroy 82 x 72 inches

Jennie Pettway - Medallion variation - c. 1975 Cotton, rayon, polyester, corduroy 82 x 72 inches

Quilts of Gees Bend / q119-08b.JPG

Quilts of Gees Bend / q119-08b.JPG

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