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May 14, 2013

I am continually amazed by the number of contributors, both to PieceWork and Knitting Traditions, whose efforts to tell a story about a family treasure lead to their discoveries about the lives of family members. Some of whom were almost completely forgotten.

Here is a case in point:

The stockings that belonged to Darlene Watson's grandfather; her article about the stockings is included in PieceWork's Knitting Traditions Spring 2013 issue. Photo by Joe Coca.
“My Grandfather’s Stockings,” Knitting Traditions Spring 2013. Author Darlene Watson writes that her mother received some of her own mother’s possessions after she died. Among them was “a small cardboard tie box containing a pair of delicate, handknitted baby stockings. On the back of the box was written: 'Sox worn by Charles Jacob Geiser. Hand made by his mother, Barbara Geiser.' . . . We will never know why these stockings remained stored away for so many years, but I’m glad they did. Had it not been for them and the persistence of my daughter, Sheila Derrington, I might never have ventured into my family’s history and ancestry, digging through box after box and deciphering handwritten accounts.”

Some of the vintage needlework magazines in PieceWork's collection. Photo by Ann Swanson.
Several years ago, my brother became very interested in our family tree and spent a lot of time tracking our ancestors back to the 17th century. One of the astounding things he learned while doing the research was that our great-grandmother, Cora Black Page, had written for at least one of the women’s magazines published in the late 19th and early 20th centuries in Augusta, Maine. Needlecraft Magazine, Comfort, Hearth and Home, and Practical Housekeeper were among the magazines published in Augusta. Unfortunately, we never learned the names of the magazines Cora contributed to. As many of you know, PieceWork has a treasure trove of vintage magazines, including a number of issues of Needlecraft. Whenever I can, I carefully peruse them, looking for Cora. If any of you ever run across her name in a needlework publication, I would love to know.

Searching for family connections is so rewarding, often surprising, but never dull. If you want to explore this fascinating way to connect with your past, do check out Family Tree Magazine, another member of the F+W family. Every issue covers resources, reviews of the latest technologies, census reports, and more to help you discover your own genealogy and your family connections.

Enjoy,


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Knitting Traditions Spring 2013

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Knitting Traditions Spring 2013 brings 25 historical knitting patterns with inspiring and informative companion stories. Patterns include knitted sweaters, Orenburg lace, knitting for babies, accessories, and more.

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