Sunday, December 21, 2008


The following is a picture of a letter from Bertha L. Corbett explaining the beginning of her Sun-Bonnet Babies, complete with drawings of them followed by a transcription:

Dear Mr. Grover,

It is a great pleasure to know that the Primer is soon to appear. To me it is always a joy to see an effort completed. You ask how the Sun-bonnet Babies originated; well, they began their career as a joke and They seem to have gone on their way creating smiles, ever after.

There once was a studio, with three young women in it. One painted on china and one sketched in water color and in ink. One day a characteristic head was up for inspection and one of the three said, "Well, it's all in the face, The character, "I think that it not always so" said the skether and thereupon drew, with a few lines, a baby in a bonnet trudging along, and for decoration effect she carried a hugh 4 leaf clover. This undoubtably is the reason why all the babies were healthy, happy, lucky, and wise.

The idea developed and the children grew more interesting all the time, as children so, until I am almost amazed at my family. It is a sincere pleasure to feel sure that my little people make real little boys and girls happier. The work is it's own reward.
Very Cordially Yours,
Bertha L. Corbett.

Bertha's designs were the most popular of all Sun-Bonnet designs. They were printed overth thing from postcards to stationary and textbooks. She is also famous for her Dutch Cleanser design which is still being used today.

Sun Bonnet Babies Primer was illistrated by Bertha Corbett, but the words were the work of Eulalie Grover.
Follow this link to see some of her earliest water color drawings.
This is one of Miss Corbett's first drawings of the girls. Do you know their names?

Now I know why I like the one with the blue dress and pink bonnet--her name is---------MOLLY! The other ones name is----May! Here are a few words from the first Primer:

"I am May. See May's sunbonnet. It is my sunbonnet. Do you see May ? Do you see the Sunbonnet Baby ?"
"I am Molly. This is my blue dress. See my pink sunbonnet. I am a Sunbonnet Baby. Who are you ?"
Visit here to see the Eulalie Osgood Grover Collection.

The quilt at the top of this post was made by my mother of 1030's feed sacks. These sacks were acquired by my mother from an aunt of hers after she passed away. I still have some of the scraps. Here are a few close ups of the blocks.

Sorry for the blurry pictures--I was in a hurry. See you next week for Sunbonnet Sunday #6.


1 comment:

Kathy said...

Awesome quilt and info. Thanks Molly! My Mom would have LOVED reading about this. I believe maybe our Moms were kindred spirits that just never got to meet.

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