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1930s Farmers Wife

1930's Farmer's Wife: Bonnie

The Bonnie block can be found on page 136 of the  1930's Farmer's Wife Sampler  (page 175 for piecing instructions.)

The Bonnie block can be found on page 136 of the 1930's Farmer's Wife Sampler (page 175 for piecing instructions.)

Click here for the original Farmer's Wife Magazine, the letter written by Lovingkindness in South Dakota can be found on page 10.

June 1934

June 1934 was a tumultuous month worldwide. The United States called on other nations to repay their outstanding debts of $12 billion, 350 million borrowed from the United States in order to fund reconstruction projects after World War 1. Britain responded by informing the US they would not be repaying its $5 billion war debt, claiming that repayment of the debt would cause substantial harm to the European economy, creating economic conditions that existed prior to the war and ultimately lead to war. France cut the pensions of WW1 veterans to ease the national burden to repayment, resulting in veterans rioting.

In Germany, things took a violent turn with the Night of the Long Knives. A single night when Hitler ordered the murders of roughly 100 people he deemed to be political threats. Victims were largely critics of Hitler and the Nazi party, and those with whom Hitler had long standing political or personal feuds.

In the United States, things were a little more normal. While John Dillinger was terrorizing the Mid-West, President Roosevelt signed the Communications Act of 1934 into law. This new law created the FCC and granted it regulation of radio and telephone communications both nationally and internationally. This ultimately resulted in the end of non-commercial radio stations, that is, not-for-profit stations. It wasn’t until 1996 that the Communications Act of 1934 was replaced with the Telecommunications Act.

On a fun note, Disney introduced Donald Duck in his first ever cartoon “The Wise Little Hen.” This little tidbit was near and dear to my heart because Donald Duck is a household favorite. Little Man’s first question every morning is if he can watch Donald Duck. We like the old cartoon versions and I’m very glad that YouTube has hours of original 1940’s and 1950’s cartoons.


The Block

The Bonnie block is so simple and strait forward that it doesn’t require any instruction or warnings. Just mind your corners and you should be peachy keen!

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Pre-Cuts

A (1) 3 1/2 x 3 1/2”

B (2) 2 x 2”

C (2) 2 x 3 1/2”

D (2) 2 x 4 3/4”

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Happy Quilting!

  • Rita

1930's Farmer's Wife: Ann

The Ann block can be found on page 24 of the  1930's Farmer's Wife Sampler  (page 163 for template instructions.)

The Ann block can be found on page 24 of the 1930's Farmer's Wife Sampler (page 163 for template instructions.)

Click here for the original Farmer's Wife Magazine, the letter written by Ugly Duckling in Illinois can be found on page 14.

July 1935

The German government passed a law making draft-dogging punishable up to 6 months in prison.  In hindsight this should have been highly suspicious considering that the German Army was disbanded after the First World War and the German government was only allowed to maintain a national police force.  

Mussolini continued aggressive actions in Ethiopia in an endeavor to recreate the Roman Empire.  Ethiopia appealed to the United States in an attempt to curb Italian expansion by complaining that Mussolini had violated the Kellog-Briand Pact.  The US declined to intervene, sighting "action" from the League of Nations.  Both the League of Nations and the Kellog-Briand Pact were created with the intention of ending military action in the face of international dispute. Unfortunately for Ethiopia, the Kello-Braind Pact was as ineffective as the League of Nations at actually preventing the rise of military ambitions or expansion.  Statements of condemnation do not dissuade countries from pursuing military and economic advancement.  It could be argued that the United State's inaction partially contributed to the Italian invasion of Ethiopia four months later.

 In the United States, Americans sweltered under the peak of the Dust Bowl. Temperatures averaged 101 and hundreds of Americans dies over the course of the month due to dehydration and exposure. Farms continued to flounder under the unprecedented heat. But thankfully coolers temperatures and coolers summers where on the horizon.

On and interesting note, the worlds first parking meter was installed in Oklahoma City.  


The Block

 Pre-Cuts

A (4) 1 1/2 x 3 1/4

B (4) 1 3/4 x 1 3/4"

C (4) 1 1/4 x 2 1/4"

D (4) 2 1/4 x 2 1/4"

E (4) 2 1/4 x 2 1/4"

F 1 3/4 x 1 3/4"

G 1 1/2 x 1"

The Ann block is relatively easy to piece, just be sure to watch the tiny triangles at the sides of each quarter of the finished block. Those tiny triangles are really nothing more than slivers of fabric and can easily be lost in the seam allowances. Also, watch how you press your seams, they can get fat fast and then you’ll end up with a lumpy block.

I apparently also never took a picture of my colored paper template for you guys, sorry about that. But here’s the list of pre-cut sizes, I’ll let you use your imagination to decide where they all piece together, those should be some interesting blocks! Good luck!

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Happy Quilting!

  • Rita

1930's Farmer's Wife: Mrs. Brown

The Mrs. Brown block can be found on page 103 of the  1930's Farmer's Wife Sampler  (page 226 for template instructions.)

The Mrs. Brown block can be found on page 103 of the 1930's Farmer's Wife Sampler (page 226 for template instructions.)

Click here for the original Farmer's Wife Magazine, the letter written by Suggestion in Missouri can be found on page 12.

July 1936

England's King Edward VIII escaped a perceived assassination attempt as he rode a horse passed crowds on Constitution Hill.  George Andrew McMahon reportedly raised a pistol in the king's direction but was interrupted by a woman in the crowd who grabbed his arm, alerting a nearby constable.  McMahon claims he never intended to shoot the king, he was merely making a protest about authorities apparent refusal to take seriously his warnings of an impending assassination attempt against Edward VIII.  McMahon was sentenced to a year of hard labor and remained under M15's surveillance until his death due to suspected personal connections with Nazi hierarchy and British fascist groups.   

Several decisions were declared in July 1936 that eased the Italian invasion of Ethiopia in October of the same year.  First: the United States refused to directly intervene in the brewing conflict on behalf of Ethiopia, deciding to defer to decisions and mediation by the League of Nations; second: the League of Nations ended economic sanctions against Italy, easing restrictions on imports; third: Great Britain announced reductions in naval patrols of the Mediterranean due to increasing tension between Italy and Ethiopia.

While things in the Mediterranean sphere where cooling down, things in the United States were heating up both figuratively and literally. A number of strikes throughout the country impacted production and employment in several industries; and the 1936 American Heat Wave took place, where week long temperatures averaged 101. This heat wave marked the peak of the Dust Bowl temperatures and resulted in hundreds of deaths across the Mid-West.  168 deaths were reported in a single weekend.

Suggestion's letter to the editor is an eye opening one, especially when compared to today's heated political climate.  It’s impossible to escape when everything is politicized and there is never a good word said about anyone. But what would things look like if we took Suggestion’s suggestions? Rather than gossiping, de-moralizing, and assassinating the characters of others, focus on their virtues.  Hanlon's Razor is a philosophical razor that can be summed up like this: never attribute to malice what can be attributed to ignorance.  Rather than assume someone is evil and vile, take a moment to consider the possibility that they just don’t know.


The Block

 The Mrs. Brown quilt block is a simple, straight forward block to work with. It’s really nothing more than a fancy 9-patch. I do think that this block would be striking as an entire quilt top, but I suppose that’s just another to-do on my ever growing wish list.

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Pre-Cuts

A (5) 2 x 2"

B (10) 1 3/4 x 1 3/4"

C (2) 2 1/2 x 2 1/2"

D (2) 2 1/2 x 2 1/2"


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Happy Quilting!

  • Rita

1930's Farmer's Wife: Alice

The Alice block can be found on page 85 of the  1930's Farmer's Wife Sampler  (page 162 for template instructions.)

The Alice block can be found on page 85 of the 1930's Farmer's Wife Sampler (page 162 for template instructions.)

Click here for the original Farmer's Wife Magazine, the letter written by Mother Memories in Nebraska can be found on page 8.

July 1937

The Peel Commission presented a report to the League of Nations, suggesting for the first time a partition of British Palestine to create two new states separating the Jewish and Muslim populations in the region. The Peel Commission was a three year long inquiry commission by the British government intended to investigate a drastic rise in violence between the Jewish and Muslim population within the Palestinian Mandate, which had been established in 1923. 

Tensions between the two populations centered largely around relative economic successes and cultural influences of newly arriving European Jews and a desire from both sides for territorial independence from Great Britain and one another.   The Commission's recommendation to partition the region was unanimously rejected by Muslim representatives, and opposed by some Jewish leaders.  Arab opposition surrounded fears of "Jewish domination" and the succession of agricultural land.  Jewish opposition came from a Zionist desire to reestablish the original, pre-Roman Jewish territories; Jewish approval of the plan centered on the concept of a recognized Jewish state regardless of territorial boundaries.  All parties were worried about proposed, mandatory population transfers and resettlement.  Ultimately, the Peel Commission's plan for partition never materialized, and all other serious partition attempts (1974, 1987, 2007) were ultimately rejected by Muslim leaders.

It was believed by supporters of the partition that the establishment of a Jewish state would have saved most of the 6 million Jews killed in the Holocaust by allowing them to immigrate from Europe.  Muslim leaders in British Palestine pressured Neville Chamberlain, British Prime Minister, into restricting Jewish immigration in 1939, around the same time that German and Polish governments began restricting Jewish emigration. 

 

THE LETTER

Mother Memories' letter to the editor hits home a little for me.  It's true that my memories of childhood are not full of my mother scrubbing floors and dusting cobwebs. Memories of my mother involve blanket forts and homemade popsicles.  Mother Memories letter reminds me to take time for my own children, even if that means that dishes are left on the counter.  Loving my children doesn't just mean providing spotless living and three course dinners, it means spending time with them and indulging their imaginations.


The Block

The Alice block has lots of small bits and lots of seems. Be sure to keep an eye on your seams when you press them so that they don’t get too thick. I pressed my seams together, and alternated the directions they were pressed so the seams snugged up against one another. I would have pressed them open, but I was afraid that the small sizes of the fabrics would make it easier for the seams to fall apart.

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Pre-Cuts

A (9) 1 1/4 x 1 1/4"

B (2) 2 1/2 x 1 1/4"

C (4) 1 1/2 x 1 1/2"

D (8) Template

E (4)Template

F (4) 1 x 2"

G (4) 1 x 1/2"

H (4) 1 1/4 x 1 1/4"


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Happy Quilting!

  • Rita

1930's Farmer's Wife: Mary

The Mary block can be found on page 64 of the  1930's Farmer's Wife Sampler  (page 218 for template instructions.)

The Mary block can be found on page 64 of the 1930's Farmer's Wife Sampler (page 218 for template instructions.)

Click here for the original Farmer's Wife Magazine, the letter written by Mrs.E. J. H. in Nebraska can be found on page 15.

August 1930

I’m going to take liberties today with this post and skip the history lesson so that I can rant a little bit about the Mary block’s letter to the editor.

I truly sympathize with the judgement Mrs. E.J.H. describes in her letter to the editor.  While pregnant with the Prime Minister and toting around three other children, I can honestly say that some people were enthusiastic about seeing "such a large family."  But not everyone was so polite, some people were downright rude and for some reason the felt the need to comment with snide remarks.  "Wow, really?" "Your husband must have wanted a large family." "You know what causes that right?" "What's it like being your husbands personal prostitute?" (This literally was said to me in the checkout line at King Soopers.)  There is a difference in tone between remarks meant in jest and remarks filled with self-righteous condemnation, and these remarks were usually delivered with a huff and an upturned glance towards my swollen stomach.  

I am a believer in Hanlon's Razor, and I tired my best to remain polite and respond with a smile, "Yes, I couldn't be more excited to meet this little one!" "Actually I would like to have more, but my husband is the one who's ready to be done having kids."  But those days when my temper was short, my responses were usually more along the lines of "I do know what causes this, clearly we're very good at it," "We just haven't found a new hobby yet," or to the last commenter, "Thank you for thinking so little of me, I'm sorry you're so bitter over your own loneliness."

Like Mrs. E.J.H. I find it somewhat baffling when a woman is judged for wanting to have more than 2 children.  I grew up under a feminist age (second wave) when girls were told they could do whatever they wanted to do, grow up to be whatever they wanted to be.  Unfortunately as I have grown up, I’ve discovered that Mother is not part of what is acceptable for girls to aspire to. 

And now that I’m pregnant with baby #5, it’s only gotten worse. Well I’m sick of it, and to be perfectly honest, those ladies can shove it.

I can only assume those individuals have never held their own "bundle of humanity" as Mrs. E.J.H. so aptly calls a new born, or celebrate the little milestones mastered by tiny hands and chubby feet.  I wonder if they've ever even tried to reorient their life's priorities away from personal want to meet the immediate and future needs of another who is absolutely dependent and completely trusting in you.  That, I know, is the most amazing and daunting job in the world.


 The Block

The Mary block is simple and quick once you get into the swing of things. I chain pieced the small B triangles to save thread. In the pre-cut section, I listed the B triangles a tad over sized. I found I was having trouble maintaining comfortable seam allowances, so I wanted you guys to have a little wiggle room just in case. Just be sure to square the block and trim to size when you’re done piecing.

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Pre-Cuts

A (2) 4 x 4" cut into HST's

B (14) 2 x 2" cut into HST's


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Happy Quilting!

  • Rita