Florida Folklife Program
Folk Heritage Awards Recipient: Nancy Morgan
Nancy Morgan (1913 - 2010) - 1985 Florida Folk Heritage Award
Nancy Morgan (White Springs) grew up in the central north Florida area known as "the Pocket," where her family carried on many traditional regional practices. Morgan's mother helped her make her first crazy quilt when she was 13. Morgan remembers her mother stitching together fabric remnants to make crazy looking patterns. For Morgan, the quilts of her youth were utilitarian: "The houses were heated with fireplaces and when the fire went out, you'd be glad to have three or four or five quilts on you and a feather bed to sleep in. That's what we had."
During the 1970s, Morgan helped found the Suwannee River Crafts Guild, based in White Springs. Throughout her long involvement with the Guild, she organized many quilt shows and taught numerous quilting workshops in the Suwannee River region. The quilting group functioned much like the communal quilting bees that were part of the traditions of her youth.
Morgan also demonstrated lye soap making, cooking, and other old ways at many cultural and historical centers in north Florida. Morgan and her husband were sponsors of the award winning Suwannee River Cloggers, which met weekly at their home. Morgan also published a book, Out of Pocket: My Life on the Florida/Georgia Border, about her early life in the nearby area.