Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Binghamton, NY

You may recall a previous post I did on a Thimble Party held in Binghamton NY (here).  Beth and I loved this group so much that we close our program, By the Chimney No More with a story about these suffragists.  

In 1912, the suffragists held a parade which was not uncommon for suffrage groups.
What you might find interesting is one of the ways they financed their parade.  Throughout this past year, we have told you story after story of quilts that were made to fundraise, or assist the community, etc.  I called these "Wish Quilts" as in--I wish we could actually see the quilt in question (and I'll be you do too). 

Wish granted.  Here is a photograph I found that was published in 1930 in the newspaper.  Granted, it's not the greatest photo but we finally get to see a true suffrage quilt.

According to the paper, the quilt was yellow and white and had hundreds of names embroidered on it.  The quilt raised nearly $200.  Fifty dollars was donated to the maternity ward at the local hospital and much of the money was used to fund the parade.

Ida Wales Gitchell was president of the suffrage organization at the time.
Ida Wales Gitchell passed in 1929 but her obituary celebrated her suffrage work.  She was the first president of the Binghamton Woman's Suffrage Club.  I mention this because it is so rare that I find mention that a woman was a local suffragist.  In fact, I've researched 45 women in my community and only one obituary makes mention of the woman's suffrage background.

Enjoy our wish quilt!  Have a safe and happy day!

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