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 Chevron stars


These blocks have a wide range of chevron shapes; many have checkerboards too.

 

Blackford's Beauty

Mrs. Smith's Favorite
Arrow-head

Stepping Stones
Stepping Stones
Endless Chain

Arrow-heads

Wyoming Valley
V Block
V Block
See also:
Nose Gay
Stepping Stone

Blackford's Beauty

The Hunt/Black Beauty/Mrs. Smith's Favorite
Blackford's Beauty
Ladies Art Company, #388, 1897

Mrs. Smith's Favorite Needlecraft Supply, ca. 1930
When the Ladies Art Company published Blackford's Beauty (#388) in 1928, it had four seamless chevrons. Quite likely that's how it appeared in the 1897 catalog, too.

Nowadays, Blackford's Beauty is usually drawn with eight diamonds instead of four solid chevrons.

The variation with diamonds was first published as Mrs. Smith's Favorite by the company Needlecraft Supply, usually known as the Old Chelsea Needlecraft Service, and it's easier to make than the LAC's original.

The alternate names above are from Barbara Brackman's Encyclopedia of Pieced Quilt Blocks, in which the block looks like Mrs. Smith's Favorite. 

Black Beauty was the name used in Nancy Cabot's newspaper column in 1933, and The Hunt, per Jinny Beyer, was in Farm Journal and Farmer's Wife about 1941.

Below, whole-quilt mockups with different color schemes to show the design possibilities.



Ladies Art Company, two colors

Three colors

Three colors

Two colors

Three colors

Three colors


Blackford's Beauty Look-alikes

The difference between Blackford's Beauty and these Blackford's look-alikes may seem trivial: There are two rectangles, in addition to squares, in each quarter of Blackford's Beauty, but Arrowhead and Stepping Stones have only triangles and squares. 

In fact, the blocks create diagonal rows of three squares each in the corners, making these blocks distinctly different from Blackford's Beauty. Our "Make It!" icon links to a McCall's tutorial that uses the Good Cheer pattern but shows the color placement used for Arrowheads. It can be used for any of the blocks below.


Good Cheer

Stepping Stones
Kansas City Star, 1931

Stepping Stones

While the name Good Cheer came from Clara Stone's 1906 Practical Needlework, the Kansas City Star published it as Stepping Stones in 1931 in two colors. KCS designer Eveline Foland suggested alternating Stepping Stones with plain blocks. We've reversed the dark and light colors to show the seamlines.

Stepping Stones (1948), two colors

Stepping Stones (1948)

Stepping Stones (1948), three colors

Stepping Stones (1948), three colors
Endless Chain
Endless Chain
Arrowheads

Arrowhead

Arrowhead
Hall, 1935


Seamstress Carrie Hall found Arrowhead during her quilt-research travels in the 1920s and 1930s. The block she stitched up as an example is now in the Spencer Museum at the University of Kansas. It is published in Carrie Hall Blocks (Havig, 1999).


Stepping Stones Kansas City Star, 1948
Stepping Stones

In 1948, the KCS republished its Stepping Stones block with the same pattern template as in 1931 but with an illustration that didn't match it. The illustration makes perfect sense as a way to construct the block, though, so we've reproduced it at left. Like the 1931 version, the 1948 block was published in only two colors, but we branched out here. The two-color version is reflected in the whole-quilt mockups.

Endless Chain

Endless Chain
"Aunt Martha," 1933

Arrow Points

The Quilt Fair Comes to You, a series of "Aunt Martha" booklets, included this block in 1933. The name Arrow Points came along a year later, in a Nancy Page column in the Birmingham News. We thank Jinny Beyer and her Quilter's Album of Patchwork Patterns (2009) for this information.

The colors in the block at left are based on Arrow Points in Barbara Brackman's Encyclopedia of Pieced Quilt Patterns.

Arrowheads

Arrowheads McCall's, web version
Our "Make It!" icon links to a McCall's Quilting page, in which the colors are chosen to create a pinwheel effect. They call it "Arrowheads." The pattern is the same as the Kansas City Star's Stepping Stones.

Wyoming Valley Block

Wyoming Valley

In July 1778, 1,000 British soldiers, Pennsylvania Loyalists, and Indians led by the Iroquis set out to attack the 5,000 American settlers in Pennsylvania's Wyoming Valley, where Scranton and Wilkes-Barre now stand.  Entering the valley on July 1, they took control of two forts.  Part of the force then marched to a third fort and demanded its surrender.*

Most of the valley's able-bodied men were away, serving in the Continental Army.  In the third fort, the valley's residents formed a militia of 386 old men, boys, and a few women, who, in a fatal misjudgment, left the fort to battle the invaders.  Only 60 survived. Most of those who weren't killed in the 45-minute battle died after they were tortured that night. 

That battle, however, was not the massacre. After the British offered generous terms of surrender, other settlers went home the next day. The British did not remain to enforce the peace. That night, Iroquis warriors attacked the settlements, burning buildings and killing as many settlers as they could. A few escaped eastward — primarily mothers with their children — where many starved or died of exposure in a vast swampland afterward called "Shades of Death."

We've read that the block's chevrons are traditionally done in red to represent the redcoats — the British forces.

An 1809 poem called "Gertrude of the Wyoming" preserved memories of the massacre.  Thanks to a congressman's fondness for that poem, a new state in the Rocky Mountains was named Wyoming in 1890.

Even so, the block was first published only in 1936. It is credited to Nancy Cabot of the Chicago Tribune. Our sources for the block are Brackman's Encyclopedia and Beyer's Quilter's Album.

*Frontier communities often built small forts that they could reach in a hurry if necessary.
Wyoming Valley Block

V. Block

V. Block

The "V" in the Ladies Art Company's Block #483 (1922) probably stood for Victory in World War I—or at least for the cease-fire agreement, the Armistice, signed in 1918. 

Here's a factoid: The "war to end all wars" formally ended when Germany made the last of its reparation payments for the cost of the war—in 2010! 
V. Block

V Block

V Block

This star, so similar to the LAC's #483, was published without attribution in Jinny Beyer's 2009 Quilter's Album of Patchwork Patterns.

The pieces in dark red make up a classic symbol called the Cross of Malta. For more on the Maltese Cross, click here: 
V. Block