Quilt Index Record:
a Essay Historical Backgrounddescription
This is one of two quilts Mary Gasperik made using "Modern Rose Panel", a quilt design by Mary McElwain of Walworth, WI. The pattern was offered as a stamped quilt top by the McElwain shop in two fabric selections. Gasperik chose "brown print and peach flowers on eggshell background". Made from kit fabrics and appliqué patterns provided in the "Modern Rose" boxed kit, this quilt exhibits Mary Gasperik's habit of experimenting with a variety of quiltING patterns and producing overall designs which are unique to each of her quilts.essay
This pattern appeared in 1934 as an applique block supplied with Rock River Co. (Janesville, WI) batting. A few years later this quilt was offered as a boxed kit in 1936 by the Mary McElwain Quilt Shop.
We are certain that these two quilts were made from the kit because the description of the fabrics closely matches the fabric in the quilts. "Suggested colors: brown print and peach flowers on eggshell background, with brown stems and panel binding."
The kit cost $11.50. A block with stamped material for a pillow cost just 75 cents.
Mary Gasperik Private CollectionInstInvContrNumF004
Information source fieldsIdentPersonF006
Blood relative of quiltmakerSourceOtherF006a
Grand-daughter Susan Salser began this research effort in 1991, after she and her two sisters divided up the quilts which belonged to their mother (Elsie Gasperik Krueger) who died in 1988. Her ongoing research has been fruitful and interesting.
Overall Quilt DescriptionTypeObjF008
Modern Rose Panel (Mary E. McElwain), Modern Rose quilt pattern No. 1039 by Nancy Cabot OverallWidthF12a
(barely legible is a cloth address label sewn to the back:
MARY GASPERIK and traces of the words "HAZELCREST' and "ILLINOIS" are visibleDateQuiltF023
The Rock River Cotton batting wrapper with this McElwain pattern has a copyright of 1934. However, IF she used the McElwain kit, then it probably wasn't made until 1936.
Quilt top descriptionLayFormatF024
Two vertical bands of appliqueSpacingF029
Strippy or vertical bands (in vertical rows separated by plain vertical bars)BordDescF034
Narrow borders at top and bottom are same size. Borders at right and left are wider and are the same size.
Quilt top materials and constructionFiberTypesF035
Quilt back materials and constructionFabFiberTypesF040
Within cross-hatching and diagonal parallel line background quilting are embedded some patterns which appear in Needleart Guild's Original Master Quilting Patterns (Grand Rapids, MI): patterns No. 83 and No. 71 (page 5 of the booklet). Double feathered banding (pattern No. 69 from page 8) forms two interior vertical borders; while pattern No. 93 (page 11) forms two vertical outer quilted borders.
Quilt notes and observationsFeaturesF053
The print cotton binding must have been supplied with the kit; Gasperik did not normally bind her quilts with printed cloth. The Gasperik quilt binding matches the brown print of the applique.
Quilt purposes usesReasonsF060
Mary's grandchildren regard her quilts as a unique collection to be preserved and appreciated.
Quilt design and materials sourcesTopSourceF064
Commercial/Published source: KitCommSourceF064b
"Modern Rose" kit by Mary McElwain Quilt Shop (Walworth, WI)PattSourceF065
"Needleart Guild's Original Master Quilting Patterns" Quilting designs used: #69, #71, #83 & #93.AddNotesF066
McElwain's kit probably did not specify the quilting design.
Excerpt of kit description: "Ready Stamped Quilt Top--The box contains background material, applique material, and final binding."
A pattern with the same block design was offered by Nancy Cabot. It was called "Potted Rose Bush". The Cabot column describes the design as follows: "Here is one of the old and well known rose designs used in a more or less modern setting. "Potted Rose Bush" is a native of Kentucky and a popular member of the quilt realm throughout the country.." This column features a drawing of the individual block as well as a sketch of a quilt showing the blocks arranged in two vertical rows of six blocks.
Exhibition history of quiltExhibitListF067a
"The Quilts of Mary Gasperik" Ravenswood Historic Site, Livermore, CA, March 14-15, 1992.
Quilt ownership and contact infoOwnershipF082
Heirs of Elmer Gasperik - contact Kathy JacobOwnerCountryF086b
Other source materials available for this quiltRelItemsF088a
Catalog: Romance of the Village Quilt (Walworth, WI: Mary A. McElwain Quilt Shop, 1936). Modern Rose Panel batt wrapper pattern from Rock River Cotton Co., Janesville, Wisconsin, 1934. Needleart Guild's Original Master Quilting Patterns, Needleart Guild, 826 E. Fulton St., Grand Rapids, Michigan (undated). The same pattern was offered by Nancy Cabot in a Chicago Tribune quilt column reading "A modern rose design in an applique pattern creates an effective quilt for single or twin beds. Either print or plains materials, or a combination of both, may be used. The pattern contains directions for cutting and setting together as well as color suggestions. For the modern rose quilt pattern, No. 1039, send 10 cents in stamps or coin, plus 2 cents to cover mailing cost, to the Needlework Bureau, Chicago Tribune, 2020 Fifth av., New York City." A quilt column from an unidentified source, but dated April 9, 1944, offers the same Pattern No. 1039. That columns reads "Here is one of the old and well-known rose designs for a patchwork quilt. It's a pattern you will enjoy working on and one that will call forth exclamations of admiration. The finished block measures 11 1/2 inches square. Pattern No. 1039 contains complete instructions, To order, send ten cents in stamps or coin to Needlework Department, care Grit, Williamsport, Pa." The illustrations in the two newspaper columns picture the same quilt design.
Quiltmaker personal informationMaidenF097b
9314 Cottage GroveCountyF106
Quiltmaker Family historyFatherNameF109
Milk Dealer/Grocery Store Owner/ButcherNoChildF116
1 (Elsie 1909-1988)NoMaleF116b
2 (Elmer and Stephen)
Quiltmaker personal quilting historyLearnedToQuiltF117
From guild or club member
Mary Gasperik made quilts because it was her life passion and greatest talent. As opportunities arose, she entered contests and exhibited them publicly. She also made special quilts for her family.
Quiltmakers Membership in quilting groupNameGroupF120
Tuley Park Quilt Club and Detroit News Quilt ClubLocGroupF121
Chicago, IL and Detroit, MISpecialGroupF122
Chicago group met to quilt and held periodic quilt shows; Detroit group held national exhibits and contests,
Other quilts made by quiltmakerNumQuiltsF123
more than 50SellQuiltF127
See the introductory essay for photos and information about this quiltmaker.
Other source materials available for quiltmakerOtherSourceMat
Merikay Waldvogel and Barbara Brackman. Patchwork Souvenirs of the 1933 Chicago World's Fair (Nashville, TN: Rutledge Hill Press, 1993) 102-103.
Merikay Waldvogel "One American Dream Comes True" Quilters Newsletter Magazine, March 2008, 46-49.
Image - medium display (250-550 pixels)file_medium
MATRIX: Center for Humane Arts, Letters and Social Sciences Online at Michigan State University, Michigan State University Museum, Alliance For American QuiltsPublisher
Quilt IndexResource Type