Author Erica Vetsch will donate the quilt above to the Dodge County Museum on Nov. 11
New York Times bestselling author and Rochester resident Erica Vetsch is always looking for inspiration for her next novel. Recently, just such inspiration struck when Vetsch visited the Dodge County Museum in Mantorville, MN, and she spotted a vintage World War I Red Cross signature quilt created by Dodge County women.
When Vetsch saw the names that had been embroidered on the red and white quilt in exchange for a donation to the Red Cross, the author of historical fiction for the inspirational market says, "I knew instantly that I wanted to include a signature quilt in my next novel. I couldn't help but wonder about these people who donated to have their names on the quilt and about the women who stitched the names."
Vetsch took that inspiration one step further by creating a signature quilt of her own honoring the WWI veterans of Dodge County. After some diligent research at the Minnesota State Historical Society Library in St. Paul, and the assistance of Mary Ann Bucher, secretary of the Dodge County Historical Society, a list was compiled.
Vetsch and her sister-in-law, Linda Ambrose of Stewartville, MN, pieced, embroidered and assembled a queen-sized replica of the original Red Cross quilt bearing the names of 359 soldiers and two Red Cross nurses from Dodge County.
The quilt will be gifted to the DCHS Museum. A presentation ceremony is planned for Veteran's Day, November 11, 2012, at 3:30 p.m. at the museum, located at 615 Main Street in Mantorville. The quilt will be on display at the museum along with the original that inspired the project as well as other World War I artifacts. The author will sign copies of her newest release, A Bride Sews with Love in Needles, CA, the WWI-era novel that emerged from a simple trip to a museum and the discovery of an antique quilt full of memories.