Sears Building


Quilt Index Record: 5B-9D-48

Essay Historical Background

description
Sears Building commemorative
essay
The 1933 Sears National Quilt Contest was announced in January 1933 with a deadline of May 15, 1933. Over 24,000 quilts were entered at local Sears stores or sent to one of 10 regional mail order houses. Quilts were judged at each site with the top three winners moving onto the next round. Finally just 30 quilts reached the final judging held at the Sears Pavilion on the 1933 Chicago World's Fair site.

Administrative Fields

InstNameF003
Waldvogel Archival Collection
InstProjNameF003a
Sears Quilt Contest 1933 Chicago World's Fair
InstInvContrNumF004
176

Information source fields

IdentPersonF006
Daughter of quiltmaker
RelnQuiltF007
Quilt owner
IfQownerF007b
Inherited
interviewerF007e
Waldvogel
locationF007f
2003

Overall Quilt Description

TypeObjF008
Finished quilt
QuiltTitleF009
Sears Building
OverallWidthF12a
OverallLengthF012b
inches
PredomColorsF014
Blue or Navy
Lavender
Purple
White
OverallColorF14b
Light or pastel colors
ContInscripF020
The quilt has a piece of the original tag still visible that was sewn into the binding on the bottom right corner and then cut off. The official contest entry label includes contest entry information: Name of Maker. Pattern Name, When Quilt Was Made, Selling Price if willing to sell, Quilter's Name, Address, City and State, Sears Store Name/Number. Entry label also included the following statement: "I certify that this quilt is entirely of my own making, and that it has never been exhibited previously" to which the quilter signed her name.
DateQuiltF023
1930-1949
DateBegunF023a
1933
DateFinishF023b
1933
LayFormatF024
Medallion or framed center
SubjQuiltF025
Sears Pavilion at the Century of Progress Exposition

Quilt top materials and construction

FiberTypesF035
Cotton
FabPrintF037
Solid/plain
ConstrucF038
Hand Piecing
ConstrucF038b
Hand Applique
ConstrucF038g
Embroidery

Quilting Description

QuiltTechF049
Hand quilting

Quiltmaker identification

QuiltTopF054
Greer, Alice Summers
QuiltedByF055
Greer, Alice Summers

Quilt provenance

LocMadeF057a
Sunbright
ProvStateF057d
Tennessee (TN)
ProvCountryF057f
United States
AcquiredF058
Inheritance

Quilt purposes uses

ReasonsF060
Challenge or Contest entry
PresUseF062
Keepsake/memento

Quilt design and materials sources

SourceMatF063
Purchased new
TopSourceF064
Original to maker
AddNotesF066
The family story is that Alice used a drawing of the Sears Pavilion on the cover of the Sears Roebuck catalog that year for her quilt design and the one airplane on her quilt is Charles Lindbergh's "Spirit of St. Louis."

Exhibitions and Contests

ExhibitListF067a
This quilt was included in a special exhibition at the 2003 Spring International Quilt Festival “The Quintessential Quilt” at Rosemont outside Chicago, IL on April 10-13, 2003. Curated by Merikay Waldvogel. Festival organized by Quilts, Inc. Houston, TX.
ContestListF071a
Sears Quilt Contest, 1933 Chicago World's Fair

Quilt ownership and contact info

OwnershipF082
Private
OwnerCountryF086b
United States

Quiltmaker personal information

MaidenF097b
Summers
GenderF098
Female
BirthDateF099
1891
DeathF100
1971
EnviroF104c
Rural
CityF106a
Sunbright
StateF107
Tennessee (TN)
CountryF108
United States
OtherSourceMat
Merikay Waldvogel and Barbara Brackman. Patchwork Souvenirs of the 1933 World's Fair (Nashville, TN: Rutledge Hill Press, 1993)

Other quilts made by quiltmaker

AddNotesF132
In 1933 at the time of the contest, Alice Greer was the postmaster of Sunbright, Tennessee, a small town northwest of Knoxville. Later, she worked as a teacher for the county schools. After retirement, she went on to college, graduating in 1962. Her daughter remembers her mother's story of making the quilt and going on the train to Chicago to see the winning quilts.

Image Information

ImageConF075a
Whole quilt
ImageTypeF076
Color
SourceF077
Slide
photocredit079a1
Merikay Waldvogel
AccessF080
Restricted
HolderF080a
Merikay Waldvogel
ReposFile
Dmwc176.jpg
5B-9D-48-461-Dmwc176.jpg
228723
image/jpeg
zoom
zmwc176.jpg
5B-9D-48-462-zmwc176.jpg
2307717
image/jpeg
verify
yes

File Information

function
Image - large display (550 or more pixels)
file_medium
image
file_format
jpeg
Contributing Institutions
MATRIX: Center for Humane Arts, Letters and Social Sciences Online at Michigan State University, Michigan State University Museum, Alliance For American Quilts
Publisher
Quilt Index
Resource Type
StillImage

Detail Images

No additional images uploaded

Additional Records

No additional records