Exquisite Tennis.

On this day in 1943, Arthur Robert Ashe, Jr. was born in Richmond, Virginia. Ashe’s father wouldn’t let him play football because of his slight build, but nearby his childhood home was Brookfield Playground, Richmond’s largest blacks-only playground, which had a tennis court. Ashe’s love for the game began here and Ashe went on to become the first African American man ever to win the singles title at Wimbledon, the U.S. Open and Australian Open. He retired in 1981 and died in 1993 from AIDS-related pneumonia. He worked the last year of his life to educate others about HIV and AIDS.

This white and red wholecloth quilt (detail view) was made by the owner’s mother’s aunt (unnamed in this record) and was brought to New Jersey in 1951. The quilt is embroidered and the quilting design is done in a unique tennis racquet pattern. The owner documented the quilt in 1989 during the Heritage Quilt Project of New Jersey, Inc.

View this quilt on The Quilt Index to read more about it’s history, design and construction. Be sure to use the zoom tool for a detailed view.


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Amy Milne headshot

Posted by Amy E. Milne
Executive Director, Quilt Alliance

This entry was posted in On this Day in History Quilts series and tagged , , , by quiltalliance. Bookmark the permalink.

About quiltalliance

The Quilt Alliance is a nonprofit 501c3 organization established in 1993 whose mission is to document, preserve, and share our International quilt heritage by collecting the rich stories that historic and contemporary quilts, and their makers, tell about our nation's diverse peoples and their communities. In support of this mission, the Alliance brings together quilt makers and designers, the quilt industry, quilt scholars and teachers, and quilt collectors to further the following goals: To promote the understanding of the quilt as an important grassroots art form. To make information about quilts available to a broad public. To educate the public about the importance of documenting quilts and quiltmakers so that their stories will not be lost.

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