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In 2018, Townshend Historical Society acquired an antique subscription quilt–simple in design with over 250 beautifully written signatures, one per triangle and the date, 1886, stitched on the plain back.
The quilt had been purchased by a quilt store in Connecticut whose owner was intrigued by all the signatures. Over a period of two years, research on Ancestry.com by the store owner and about a dozen quilters, the quilt’s connection to the Townshend, VT Baptist Church became apparent.
Subscription quilts were common in that era as a means of raising money for a cause, local or otherwise. Individuals or families would donate an amount of money to have their names written in one of the quilt squares.
Family Names on Townshend Subscription/Signature Quilt 1886