On this day in 1887, African American composer, arranger and teacher Florence Beatrice Smith Price was born in Little Rock, Arkansas to a teacher/entrepreneur and a dentist. Young Florence played her first piano recital at age four, taught by her mother. The Chicago Symphony Orchestra presented Price’s Symphony in E Minor during the Chicago World’s Fair (Century of Progress Exposition) in 1933, marking the first time a symphony by a black woman had been performed by a major symphony orchestra.

Mary Gasperik made this “Star Arcturus—Century of Progress” quilt based on patterns shared in the Nancy Cabot newspaper column in 1933 that honor the 1933 Century of Progress Exposition. Susan Salser, Gasperik’s grand-daughter, began researching her grandmother’s quilts in 1991, after she and her two sisters divided up the quilts which belonged to their mother (Elsie Gasperik Krueger) who died in 1988. The Mary Gasperik Quilts consist of more than 80 full-sized quilts plus numerous miniatures and studies created in Chicago between 1933 and 1967 by Hungarian immigrant and award winning quiltmaker Mary Gasperik.

View this quilt on The Quilt Index to find out! Read more about its history, design and construction. Be sure to use the zoom tool for a detailed view or click the “See full record” link to see a larger image and all the data entered about that quilt.


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Posted by Amy E. Milne
Executive Director, Quilt Alliance