Bettie Bendolph Seltzer
Daughter of Annie Bendolph, longtime quiltmaker Bettie Bendolph Seltzer is a clearinghouse of quiltmaking information. Born in 1939, she confirms the utilitarian character of early-twentieth-century quilts, the social aspects of their creation, and the humble origins of their materials.
When I was growing up, Mama made quilts to keep us warm. The ladies then piece their quilts at home and go to each other house to help quilt. At the start all they was making them out of was old clothes, pants, fertilizer sacks, dress tails, and meal and flour sacks, too.
Following her mother’s example, Bettie started making quilts at about age ten, at first from old clothes.
It wasn’t till I started at the quilting bee around 1971 that I started using good cloth. I never used that old-clothes stuff again. It’s too tough to sew.
She has also become the Boykin postmaster.
I helped out up at the post office for about five years, and then they appointed me the postmaster. I’ve been the postmaster for six years now. It ain’t easy but I love the job. I work six hours a day every day except Sunday. They come in there, get the mail, and go. Don’t nobody stand around and gossip. When I’m in the post office, wearing that postal uniform, I’m postmaster. They don’t look at me like I’m Bettie. I might see my best friend run in there, get the mail, and out. They don’t chat. I like it like that.