Michigan Quilt Project
Michigan Quilt Project

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The African American Collection

Willie Maddox
Kalamazoo, Kalamazoo County, Michigan
Cotton with polyester filling
68” x 86”
MSUM 6696.1
Photo by Pearl Yee Wong, all rights reserved Michigan State University Museum

A native of Alabama, Maddox learned to quilt from her mother and sister when she was a young girl. The love of quilting continued throughtout her life and she produced countless quilts. Most of her quilts she made to give as gifts to relatives on special occassions such as birthdays and Christmas, a few were sold. In the last years of her life she lived in a small apartment in Kalamazoo, Michigan, where she kept her collection of completed quilts stored between the mattress and bed springs. Of her quilting, she once commented that, "I do it for the pleasure..I just like to piece." Maddox's quilts were exhibited at the Space Gallery at Western Michigan University in 1987.

By Marsha MacDowell

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