By CHRIS COLLINS
Mary Elizabeth andquot;Lizzieandquot; Taylor and Lillie Ward, two women who helped build the community of Haines in the early 1900s, also contributed to a friendship quilt completed in 1936.
Since February, seven members of the Haines Heritage Club have devoted themselves to finding out as much as possible about Taylor, Ward and the 40 other women who signed their names on fabric pieced together to form the finished product that has been dubbed the andquot;Living Quilt.andquot;
The quilt and the quiltmakers' stories will be the centerpiece of this year's Fourth of July Heritage Quilt Show at Haines. A collection of other quilts completed before 1950 most of which were made in the '20s and '30s also will be displayed from 8 a.m., to 2:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Haines Library at 818 Cole St.
The Living Quilt was donated to the Eastern Oregon Regional Museum at Haines in 1993 upon the death of Olga Ward, according to Mary Jane Guyer, heritage club secretary. Ward won the quilt in a raffle in 1936. Guyer and her group are continuing to search for information about why the quilt was raffled.
andquot;That would be the cherry on top of the cake if we could find out why the quilt was made,andquot; she said.
In addition to Guyer, other heritage club members are Eldon Clapp, Marjorie Peck, Georgia Sieg, J.O. Maxwell, Doris Leggett and Vernon Stewart.
Here are some of the details the club has compiled about Taylor and Ward:
andquot;Lizzieandquot; Taylor's family, the Ashwoods, traveled to Oregon by wagon train in 1882, arriving at Haines on Aug. 24 of that year. She married andquot;the boy across the road,andquot; George H. Taylor, on April 14, 1907, according to researchers. The couple farmed in the Rock Creek area until they retired and moved to Baker City. George Taylor died in 1943 and Lizzie died in 1950.
Lillie Favorite Ward was born in 1881 and died in 1962. She married Worthy Ward in Baker City on Sept. 17,1900. Ward was a member of the Rebekah Lodge and the Methodist Church at Haines.
Guyer said the project really got its start when the Living Quilt was brought over from the museum to fill out the display at last year's Fourth of July show. The quilt caught Clapp's attention and he and his fellow researchers agreed to seek more information about the women whose names appeared on it.
andquot;They were really remarkable ladies,andquot; Guyer said. andquot;This is a project I've loved doing.andquot;
She's enjoyed learning about the women whose contributions included helping raise the money needed to build a school and gymnasium, a community park and churches in the town of Haines.
andquot;Their efforts are still going strong in that community today,andquot; Guyer said.
A weekly feature about the quilt, published in The Record-Courier newspaper, has generated responses from people all over the country who knew the women or had stories to tell or photographs to share.
andquot;It kind of snowballed from there,andquot; Guyer said.
Of the 42 women who signed the quilt, little or nothing is know about 16 of them. Guyer hopes that will change when people gather at Haines Wednesday to celebrate the Fourth of July and view the quilt exhibit at the library.