ILLINOIS STATE MUSEUM
Quilts by Bertha Stenge
Hand-pieced and appliquéd cotton, trapunto quilting
Illinois State Museum Collection
To commemorate Franklin D. Roosevelt's famous "Four Freedoms" speech in 1941 in which the President tried to prepare Americans for entry into World War II, Norman Rockwell created four posters depicting simple family scenes, illustrating freedoms Americans often take for granted. The United States government printed millions of copies of the Rockwell posters and used them in selling over 132 million dollars in war bonds. Bertha Stenge chose the same theme for this quilt, appliquéing a silhouetted Revolutionary War soldier in the center and using the five-pointed stars of the American flag as the dominant pattern. In the borders, in trapunto script, she stitched: "Freedom from Want," "Freedom of Worship," "Freedom from Fear," and "Freedom of Speech." In 1945 the Woman's Day magazine used a color picture of this quilt and offered an instruction sheet and pattern illustrations for making Bertha Stenge's Four Freedoms quilt.
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Contact Janice Tauer Wass for permission to reproduce any materials on this page.
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© Illinois State Museum -- 30-December-98