The Famed Quilters of Gee’s Bend Are Using Their Sewing Skills to Make a Face Mask for Every Citizen in Their Small Alabama Town

April 13, 2020

From creating visuals to promote public health tips, to producing posters that celebrate hospital workers, artists of every ilk are using their skills to help fight the coronavirus pandemic. Even down in Gee’s Bend—the tiny Alabama hamlet formally known as Boykin that has nurtured three generations of quiltmakers—artists are lending a hand, using their skills to make masks for members of their community. The project started when two of the community’s longtime quilters, Mary Margaret Pettway and Mary McCarthy, saw an article about medical professionals in a neighboring city dealing with a face mask shortage. Included in the story was a template for how to make masks at home—which is exactly what the quilters did.