One day in 1934 Ernest B. Haight couldn’t keep his mouth shut. He noticed the imprecision of a quilt his wife, Isabelle Hooper Haight, was working on.
“In many of the blocks, the corners of the pieces didn’t fit too well. I had to mention it, and she came right back with, ‘Well, if you can do better, prove it!! If not, keep still.’ Soooooo- What else could I do?”
Over the next fifty years he made more than 300 quilts! For the first 25 years his quilts were family projects because his father, mother, and wife hand quilted them.
As a man with an engineering degree from the University of Nebraska in 1924, Ernest valued mathematical precision and efficient processes. He said, “I think in terms of methods as well as esthetics.” As a result he developed several time-saving innovations to cut, sew, and quilt his boldly designed quilts.
Ernest generously shared his innovations. Beginning in the 1970s, he demonstrated his methods to quilt groups, self-published a booklet about machine quilting, and gave interviews for articles in national magazines. He also received formal recognition when inducted into the Nebraska Quilters Hall of Fame in 1986, just at the time declining health brought his half-century of quiltmaking to a close.