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Authors: Jennifer Chiaverini

The Quilter's Legacy

BOOK: The Quilter's Legacy
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The Quilter's Legacy
Chiaverini, Jennifer
Simon and Schuster (2003)

SUMMARY:
Readers of Jennifer Chiaverini's popular and engaging Elm Creek Quilts series are treated in each successive volume to storytelling that expertly weaves the joys and intricacies of history, quilting, and family ties. In The Quilter's Legacy, a daughter's search for her mother's treasured heirlooms illuminates life in Manhattan and rural Pennsylvania at the turn of the last century.When precious heirloom quilts hand-stitched by her mother turn up missing from the attic of Elm Creek Manor, Sylvia Bergstrom Compson resolves to find them. From scant resources -- journal entries, receipts, and her own fading memories -- she pieces together clues, then queries quilting friends from around the world. When dozens of leads arrive via the Internet, Sylvia and her fiancé, Andrew, embark on a nationwide investigation of antiques shops and quilt museums.Sylvia's quest leads her to unexpected places, where offers of assistance are not always what they seem. As the search continues, revelations surface about her mother, Eleanor Lockwood, who died in 1930, when Sylvia was only a child. Burdened with poor health and distant parents, Eleanor Lockwood defied her family by marrying for love. Far from her Manhattan home, she embraced her new life among the Bergstroms -- but although warmth and affection surrounded Eleanor at last, the Bergstroms could not escape the tragedies of their times.As Sylvia recovers some of the missing quilts and accepts others as lost forever, she reflects on the woman her mother was and mourns the woman she never knew. For every daughter who has yearned to know the untold story of her mother's life, and for every mother who has longed to be heard, The Quilter's Legacy will resonate with heartfelt honesty as it reveals what tenuous connections bind the generations and celebrates the love that sustains them.

The Quilter's Legacy
Chiaverini, Jennifer
Simon and Schuster (2003)

SUMMARY:
Readers of Jennifer Chiaverini's popular and engaging Elm Creek Quilts series are treated in each successive volume to storytelling that expertly weaves the joys and intricacies of history, quilting, and family ties. In The Quilter's Legacy, a daughter's search for her mother's treasured heirlooms illuminates life in Manhattan and rural Pennsylvania at the turn of the last century.When precious heirloom quilts hand-stitched by her mother turn up missing from the attic of Elm Creek Manor, Sylvia Bergstrom Compson resolves to find them. From scant resources -- journal entries, receipts, and her own fading memories -- she pieces together clues, then queries quilting friends from around the world. When dozens of leads arrive via the Internet, Sylvia and her fiancé, Andrew, embark on a nationwide investigation of antiques shops and quilt museums.Sylvia's quest leads her to unexpected places, where offers of assistance are not always what they seem. As the search continues, revelations surface about her mother, Eleanor Lockwood, who died in 1930, when Sylvia was only a child. Burdened with poor health and distant parents, Eleanor Lockwood defied her family by marrying for love. Far from her Manhattan home, she embraced her new life among the Bergstroms -- but although warmth and affection surrounded Eleanor at last, the Bergstroms could not escape the tragedies of their times.As Sylvia recovers some of the missing quilts and accepts others as lost forever, she reflects on the woman her mother was and mourns the woman she never knew. For every daughter who has yearned to know the untold story of her mother's life, and for every mother who has longed to be heard, The Quilter's Legacy will resonate with heartfelt honesty as it reveals what tenuous connections bind the generations and celebrates the love that sustains them.

Also by Jennifer Chiaverini

The Quilter's Apprentice

Round Robin

The Cross-Country Quilters

The Runaway Quilt

SIMON & SCHUSTER
Rockefeller Center
1230 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10020

This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are products of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

Copyright © 2003 by Jennifer Chiaverini
All rights reserved, including the right of
reproduction in whole or in part in any form.

SIMON & SCHUSTER
and colophon are registered
trademarks of Simon & Schuster, Inc.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Chiaverini, Jennifer.
The quilter's legacy : an Elm Creek Quilts novel / Jennifer Chiaverini.
p.    cm.
1. Compson, Sylvia (Fictitious character)—Fiction. 2. Quiltmaking—Fiction.
3. Art thefts—Fiction. 4. Aged women—Fiction. 5. Quilters—Fiction. I. Title.
PS3553.H473 Q58 2003
813′.54—dc21
2002030930
ISBN-13: 978-1-4165-8734-7
ISBN-10: 1-4165-8734-9

Visit us on the World Wide Web:
http://www.SimonSays.com

To my mother, Geraldine Neidenbach

Acknowledgments

I owe a deep debt of gratitude to Denise Roy, Maria Massie, and Rebecca Davis for their ongoing support of my work. Thank you for doing what you do so well.

Thank you to Janet Finley and the staff and volunteers of the Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum for generously sharing information about their museum and city.

Many thanks to Anne Spurgeon for her research assistance, but most of all, for her friendship.

I am grateful for the unwavering encouragement, faith, and tolerance of my friends and family, especially Geraldine Neidenbach, Heather Neidenbach, Nic Neidenbach, Virginia and Edward Riechman, Leonard and Marlene Chiaverini, Martin Lang, and Rachel and Chip Sauer. Thank you, Vanessa Alt, for playing with Nicholas while I wrote this book.

My husband, Marty, and my children, Nicholas and Michael, have enriched my life with their love and laughter. I could not do it without you.

Contents

Acknowledgments

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight

Chapter Nine

Chapter Ten

Chapter Eleven

Chapter One

S
ylvia supposed all brides-to-be considered eloping at some point during the engagement, but she had never expected to feel that way herself, and certainly not a mere few weeks after agreeing to become Andrew's wife. She shook her head as she flipped through the magazines someone had left on the desk—
Bride's, American Bride, Country Bride
—and dumped the whole stack into the trash can. Unless they came out with an edition of
Octogenarian Bride
, she would leave the pleading overtures of the bridal industry to the younger girls. Surely she could fend for herself when all she and Andrew wanted was a small, private ceremony in the garden.

The door to the library swung open, and in walked her young friend and business partner, Sarah McClure, neatly dressed in jeans and a button-down shirt, the glasses she wore only reluctantly tucked into the breast pocket. She carried a small white box in one hand. “Do you have a moment?”

“Yes. I was just doing some light housekeeping.” Sylvia gestured to the trash can. “Are you responsible for this?”

“Are you kidding? After you scolded me for offering to take you shopping for your wedding gown?”

“I'm glad you learned your lesson.” Sylvia frowned. Who could it have been, then? All of the Elm Creek Quilters had free run of the office. Summer spent more time there than anyone other than Sarah, but she was not the bridal magazine type. “Diane,” she declared. “Just yesterday I overheard her say that this will be her only chance to plan a wedding because both of her children are boys. Do you suppose she forgot the magazines or left them deliberately, hoping I would be caught up in the wedding planning frenzy that seems to have captivated everyone else around here?”

“Ask her yourself,” said Sarah, smiling. “She and Agnes are coming over to discuss new courses for next season.”

“Already? Elm Creek Quilt Camp won't open until spring.”

“Would you rather have them work ahead on next year's classes or plan your wedding?”

“I suppose you're right.”

“You can't blame us for being excited. After you turned down Andrew the third time, most of us gave up hope that you two would ever get married.”

“If you were disappointed, it was your own fault for treating our relationship like a spectator sport.”

Sarah laughed. “I wasn't disappointed. I always knew it would happen eventually. In fact, I've been saving something for you for months with this occasion in mind.”

She set the box on the table.

“What is it?” asked Sylvia, wary. “I distinctly said we did not want any engagement gifts.”

“This doesn't really count.”

“How could it not count? It's in a wrapped box; it's quite obviously a gift.” But Sylvia smiled and unwrapped it. Inside was nestled a pair of silverplated scissors fashioned in the shape of a heron. “My goodness.” She slipped on her glasses and studied the scissors, astonished. “My mother had a pair exactly like these. Where on earth did you find this?”

“In your attic, earlier this summer when we were looking for your great-grandmother's quilts,” said Sarah. “You ordered me back to work every time I got sidetracked, so when I found them, I set them aside to show you later. When you found the quilts, I forgot about the scissors in all the excitement.”

BOOK: The Quilter's Legacy
8.7Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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