Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Goldie Tracy Richmond - Quilter, 1896-1972

We learned the amazing story of this fascinating woman at our Historical League meeting on Monday, February 1. Carolyn O'Bagy Davis has researched Goldie Tracy Richmond for years, met with Tohono O'odham people and uncovered lost quilts that Goldie made. We are grateful for Goldie's artistic quilt works and so glad that Carolyn has rescued them for history. Several quilts are at AHS Museum in Tucson. Carolyn also brought a quilt for us to see the detail up close. Goldie described the scenes in her quilts with embroidery thus turning the quilt into a journal.

Goldie Tracy Richmond "Desert Angel"
Picking sahuaro fruit with a quipad c. 1932
Scene of picking sahuaro fruit stitched in this quilt
Many State Fair ribbons from her quilts
Goldie lived on the Tohono O'odham reservation for years and documented the story of the people in her quilts. Having little money, she befriended a dressmaker so any scraps of left-over materials became her quilts. At 6'4" and 340 lbs, she was a prominent figure among the native people remembered for telling the story of Arizona history through her sewing and her big heart. Reaching only sixth grade and never having a sewing lesson, her unique quilts are  a diary of desert life. She was a trapper, farmer and owner of a Trading Post. She once strangled a bobcat that attached her husband!
Thanks to Dee Steen and Mary Parker for organizing this wonderful presentation.

League members and guests linger in the lobby.