University of Texas, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History

A Guide to the McCrady (Kathleen H.) Quilt History Collection, 1890-2006

Descriptive Summary

Creator: McCrady, Kathleen H.
Title: Kathleen McCrady Quilt History Collection,
Dates: 1890-2006
Abstract: Kathleen McCrady is a nationally recognized quilt maker and quilt historian. The collection contains records of the Austin Area Quilt Guild, which include announcements, quilt show programs, workshop applications, member rostters, and financial reports dating from 1979-2000.
Accession No.: 2002-135; 2006-074
Extent: 12 ft. 3 in.
Laguage: Materials are written in English.
Repository: Dolph Briscoe Center for American History,The University of Texas at Austin

Creator's Sketch

Kathleen McCrady is a nationally recognized quilt maker and quilt historian. Born Kathleen Holland in 1925 to tenant farmers, McCrady spent much of her childhood in rural Texas and Oklahoma. She married Jesse (Jack) McCrady on December 24, 1942 when she was a senior in high school. During World War II, McCrady moved back to Texas. She and her family lived throughout Texas, except for a brief stint in Kansas from 1961 to 1962. McCrady worked for the Austin Independant School District until her retirement in 1987.

Quilting has always been a part of Kathleen McCrady's life. During her childhood, her mother and maternal grandmother made quilts to cover beds. McCrady's mother taught her to sew as a child. Her mother-in-law and her mother were also avid quilt makers. In the late seventies, McCrady became active in the Austin Area Stitchery Guild and a subgroup, the Nitestitchers, who met informally on Sundays to socialize and quilt. In 1979, McCrady became a charter member of the Austin Area Quilt Guild. She has held various positions in the guild including President (1980), Bee Coordinator (1981), Historian (1985), Ad Hoc Committee Chair for Quilting Shows (1993) and Conservation Chair (2000). Kathleen McCrady also taught quilting classes and workshops. Her classes took place both in her home and in the form of a traveling workshop. In 1995, she established the Quilt History Study Hall and offered classes on quilt history, restoration, and conservation using her extensive collections of quilts, fabrics, ephemera. Several of McCrady's quilts have won several awards and been shown in exhibitions and magazines.

Scope and Contents

Feedsack samples, quilting patterns, manuscripts, newspaper and magazine clippings, calendars, photographs, quilting exhibit programs, and sewing notions document Kathleen McCrady's involvement in quilt making, quilt appraisal, and documentation of quilting history. The bulk of the McCrady collection is comprised of feedsack swatches, patterns newsclippings, and quilting notions, and related documents gathered by McCrady to document the history of American quilting for the Quilt History Study Hall. Including in the Quilt History Study Hall Records are accession cards and pictures of historic quilts, which are located at the Windale Center for the Quilt. The accession cards provide information about each quilt, including donor information, physical description, time period, date acquired, and provenance. Records of the Austin Area Quilt Guild include announcements, quilt show programs, workshop applications, membership rosters, and financial reports dating from 1979 to 2000 and document the groups' biennial quilt shows, conservation activities, workshops, and monthly meetings. "An Overview of a Quilter's Life (in Quilts): The Collection of Lora Mae McNeil" is a group of quilting memorabilia and quilting patterns. McCrady acquired the materials from 1999 from a friend of McNeil's son. The documents include McCrady's notes regarding a meeting between her and McNeil in 1999.


Access Restrictions

Access to Negatives is restricted

Index Terms

McCrady, Kathleen H.--Archives.
Austin Area Quilt Guild--Archives.
Quilting--United States--History--20th century.
Quilts, American.
Quilts--Texas--History--20th century.

Related Material

Kathleen H. McCrady's quilts are located at the Winedale Center for the Quilt at the Windale Historical Center, a division of the Dolph Briscoe Center for American History.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Kathleen H. McCrady Quilt History Collection, 1890-2006, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin

Detailed Description of the Papers


4M829 Austin Area Quilt Guild:
Conservation Grant Application Dallas Report
Quilting Bylaws and Rosters
Austin Area Quilt Guild - Board Meeting, Minutes
Austin Area Quilt Guild - Signature Quilt
Austin Area Quilt Guild:
PAAQT News Professional Asssociation of Appraisers - Quilted Textile Certification Program Correspondence
An Overview of a Quilter's Life (in quilts):
The Collection of Lora Mae McNeil
Book I:
Kathleen's visit with her in 1999
Article's, pictures, newspaper clippings, patterns, 1928-1970's
Book II:
Newspaper patterns, Ruby McKim Patters, Designes Worth Doing Catalog, Anne Orr articles & patterns, Nancy Page Quilt Club Patters, Ruby Reid Robinson articles and pattersn, Carlie Sexton articles
Book III:
1980, 1990's Newspaper articles, picutres, templates, drawings, patterns, correspondence
4M831 Museum programs, 1993-2002
Printed materials, 1981-1989
Quilt Engagement Calendars, American Quilters Society [twelve], 1984-1998
American/International Quilt Association Calendar, 1998
Calendar of Quilts, 1985
2.325/T58b Piecemmaker Time and Seasons Wall Calendars [eight with some patterns], 1990-2000
The American Quilt Calendar by the American International Quilt Association (four calendars), 1998-1997
Assorted wall calendars, 1992-2000
Necker's Cube Quilt poster, 1982
4M831 Booklets and Patterns
Block Library
Block Library
Barbara Bannister Booklet, 1977
Laura Wheeler newspaper quilting designs
3S129c Photographs
Regional and national quilt shows, 1984-2000
3S129d Regional and national quilt shows, 1984-2000
3S16.4 Slides
An Overview of a Quilter's Life (photographs)
3S105b Negatives [restricted]
4M829 Quilt History Study Hall
4J392 Accession Cards, inventory
Brochures, mail-out info, student handouts, class outline, slides
Notebook #1 [quilting pattern examples, QHSH PM-395
Barbara Brackman [newsletters, patterns, fabric samples], QHSH PM-402
Book I, Feedsack History, feedsack samples, solids, sacks with motifs, yellow, QHSH F-423
4J393 Book II, Feedsack examples, reds, orange, wine, QHSH F-424
Book III, Feedsack examples, pinks, QHSH F-425
4J394 Book IV, Feedsack examples, aqua, teal, turquoise, greens, QHSH F-426
Book V(a), Feedsack examples, blue, QHSH F427
4J395 Book VI(b), Feedsack examples, blue, QHSH F-428
Book VII, Feedsack examples, lavender, purple, orchid, brown, gray, QHSH F-430
Book VIII, Feedsack examples, multiple colors in prints, QHSH F-429
Book IX, Vintage examples, sugar/flour sacks, QHSH F-431
4J396 Fabric swatch samples
2.325/E468 Mattie Fancher's quilt patterns and catalogs, 1928, 1956, n.d.
Artifact Collection