Designed by Eva Lovelace Counts
Gift of Jane Duke
McKissick Museum Collection 2007.01.173.01
The center block of this extravagantly exquisitely embroidered crazy quilt showcases a bright pink strip of fabric with the letters and date “JCB Jr -1926” in a satin stitch. Fabrics are primarily wool, cotton, and wool/cotton blends. A floral and botanical motif is depicted through the stitching and embroidery of the quilt, though the artist was careful to change the stitching between each block to avoid repetition. The running, herringbone, ray, French knot, seed, and feather stitches are among those featured in the quilt. The fabrics range from pinstripe menswear wool to upholstery fabric to blanket plaid. Counts could have made this quilt for her son-in-law or her grandson, both of whom were referred to as “J.C. Brooks, Jr.” in census records. The significance of the 1926 date remains a mystery.
John C. Brooks (1890-1939), Newberry County, SC, ca. 1930
Eva D. Lovelace Counts (1878-1942) 2007.01.173.01
Eva Lovelace was born in the Mt. Pilgrim community in Newberry County, SC, the daughter of Drury Lovelace and Johanna Hartman. A farmer, her father died of typhoid fever in 1881. At the time of his passing, her mother was 26 and had three children, Oscar, Eva, and Mary, all under the age of 6. The young couple had also lost an 18-month old child in 1873 to unknown causes. As a child, Eva was musically inclined, appearing in numerous school choral productions.
Her widowed mother remained single and according to an announcement in the Newberry Herald and News, Johanna had one of her eyes removed in “a delicate and successful surgical operation” in 1893. Eva remained close with her mother throughout her life. Newberry newspapers contain numerous entries of visits and shopping trips between the two.
In 1896, Eva married Enos Counts, a farmer and mechanic from Newberry County. They had two children, Jennie and Horace. Like her mother, Jennie was also active in school choral productions. Eva was a leader in the local Ladies’ Aid Society, often hosting meetings in her home. Eva and her daughter frequently assisted with the food at local community fairs and gatherings.
Jennie married John Caldwell Brooks, Jr. in 1917. Brooks was a graduate of Newberry College and a lifelong educator who served as a teacher and school superintendent in several districts throughout the state. They had a son, J.C. Brooks, Jr. in 1919 and a daughter Marcelle three years later. Jennie’s husband passed away unexpectedly when he was 48 years old. (259)