Concept

Harriet Powers

Summary
Harriet Powers (October 29, 1837 – January 1, 1910) was an American folk artist and quilter. Born into slavery in rural northeast Georgia, she married young and had a large family. After the American Civil War and emancipation, she and her husband became landowners by the 1880s, but lost their land due to financial problems. Powers used traditional appliqué techniques to make quilts that expressed local legends, Bible stories, and astronomical events. Only two of her quilts are known to have survived: Bible Quilt 1886 and Pictorial Quilt 1898. Her quilts are considered among the finest examples of nineteenth-century Southern quilting. Her work is on display at the National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C., and the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Massachusetts. Biography Powers was born into slavery in 1837 near Athens, Georgia. She is believed to have spent her early life on a plantation as a slave, owned by John and Nancy Lester in Madison County and learned t
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