Wednesday, January 23, 2008

A Day to Remember

In a flurry of post-holiday, selfish knitting, I made myself this scarf. Though I have a lovely and functional fleece scarf that my sister made for me, I wanted to have a scarf made out of yarn by me. I whipped this up pretty quick.

Yarn: Plymouth Baby Alpaca Worsted Paint acquired in Asheville during a yarn crawl with my spa peeps
Colorway: hmmmmmm . . . where is that ball band?
Pattern: Just a simple basket weave until I ran out of yarn
Needles: US 10 Hiya Hiya circulars (starting to love these needles)

Sooooo soft.

I was pleased with how it turned out and wanted to show it off in some nice photos in natural light. So I decided to have it modeled by one of the bronze statues in front of the museum I pass on my walk to the office. I selected Mr. Thomas Day as the lucky model.

I chose Thomas Day in honor of the recent Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday and the upcoming start of Black History Month in February. Here's a quote from the museum's web page describing him:

"a free African American who, through his skills and personal endeavors, became one of the most prolific producers of furniture in the state during the antebellum period. Day accomplished this even though the enslavement of African Americans and restrictive laws against free blacks characterized the society in which he lived."

By all accounts, Mr. Day was quite a talented craftsman. But the more I read about Mr. Day, the more I realize how much I don't know about African American history. While Mr. Day was subject to the many legal restrictions imposed upon free blacks, according to one website detailing his life, Mr. Day owned slaves. I can hardly get through books that describe slavery in detail as I often become emotionally overwhelmed by the evils of it all. So the idea of a free African American owning slaves gives me pause. I need to learn more of the story. I guess that's the purpose of Black History Month. I'll be at the library.*
ETA: *I found this transcript of a Black Issues Forum on UNC-TV discussing "Black Slave Owners & Free Slaves." It provides more perspective on what Thomas Day was all about.

1 comment:

Olga said...

I love the way your scarf looked draped around his neck. very cool post.