On this day in 1917, jazz pianist Theolonius Monk was born in Rocky Mount, North Carolina. He moved to New York City with his parents and two siblings at the age of five and started playing piano at age six. He was mostly self-taught, but took some classes at Julliard School of Music. Monk became the second-most recorded jazz composer (after Duke Ellington) and was one of only five jazz musicians to be featured on the cover of Time magazine.

Burrah Williams of Rocky Mount, North Carolina, hand pieced and hand quilted this “Babies First Star” or “Hexagonal Star” quilt in 1932. Williams used scrap fabric for the top and purchased backing fabric at Charles [store?] for $.10/yard. The quiltmaker documented her quilt as part of the North Carolina Quilt Project.

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.


Quilt Index partners

Amy Milne headshot

Posted by Amy E. Milne
Executive Director, Quilt Alliance

See You in June for Month Three!

Thank you so much to everyone who has participated in the Quilt Alliance’s Birthday Block of the Month so far! We’ve made two very different but complementary blocks together and we can’t wait to make more. Join us next month as we make a block designed by Pat Sloan — we’ll send instructions out on the 15th.

Be sure to tag @quiltalliance and @zakfoster.quilts on Instagram with your block photos this month, and use the hashtag #QuiltAllianceBOM (or email us a photo of your block at blockparty@quiltalliance.org). And leave any questions about this month’s block in the comments below!


  1. terrysthoughtsandthreads

    I love my daily email from Quilt Alliance. May I suggest that the “view this quilt” and zoom feature be enlarged? It is often, with the zoom, still smaller than the original photo in the email. Just a request. Many thanks for sharing all that you share. When my book, Quilter’s Quarters, is in print this early winter, I would like to send you a copy. Do you have a P.O. address?

    Terry Palardy

  2. quiltalliance

    Thanks, Terry! It is frustrating when you so want to see a larger image of an interesting quilt! Since the Quilt Index is a grassroots project with images coming from many sources (state and regional quilt documentation days, museums, private collectors), there is a lot of variety in the resolution and quality of the photos submitted. The “View This Quilt” link takes you to the Basic Record page for that quilt and you can use the zoom tool in this view by clicking your mouse over the image and dragging it to see any part of the image larger. If the original image submitted by the contributor is high resolution, you can often see a much enlarged view where even single stitches are visible. However, if the image uploaded is a low resolution, the zoom view (and the Full Record view for that matter) are not much larger than the basic view image. I take my screenshots for the blog from the Full Record view. You can see this view for any record by clicking the “See full record” link at the bottom of the Basic Record page. I use the Basic Display link to introduce the quilt because it has a summary of information about the quilt, sort of an at-a-glance view to start.

    We have more videos planned for the Cruise and Use series (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XH1o9G_HllM) on the Quilt Index Youtube channel and a simple guide on how to use the different views is at the top of that list.

    Thanks, please do send us a copy of your book!

    All best,


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