Lindsey, Kathleen D(orothy) 1949-

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LINDSEY, Kathleen D(orothy) 1949-


Born June 13, 1949, in Clayton, NJ; daughter of William Henry (a railroad worker and clergyman) and Mae Williams; married David L. Lindsey (a systems administrator), June 25, 1966; children: David II, Donald, Dean, Natasha Sade, Jaquille, Darrell (deceased). Education: Graduated from high school in Clayton, NJ. Religion: Church of Christ. Hobbies and other interests: Quilting, camping, gardening, cooking, reading.


Home—506 Elm Ave., Clayton, NJ 08312. E-mail—[email protected]


Writer. Performer, with sisters, of Seven Quilts for Seven Sisters live and on television; public speaker. Member and leader of quilting guilds; teacher of quilting and other folk art crafts.


Needle Little Love.


Numerous awards for individual quilts; New Jersey General Assembly Award for A Stitch in Time; ceremonial proclamation from Mayor of Clayton, NJ, 2004.


A Stitch in Time (play), first performed in New Jersey, 1992.

Sweet Potato Pie (picture book), illustrated by Charlotte Riley-Webb, Lee & Low (New York, NY), 2003.


Fish to Fry, a picture book; Pa Pa's Working Tools, a picture book; Run Faredy Run, the story of a slave girl who finds her way to freedom by the use of coded quilts and song.


Through her many contributions to the understanding of African-American history, Kathleen D. Lindsey has come to be known as "Miss Kat." Lindsey and her sisters created a stage performance called Seven Quilts for Seven Sisters that uses their own quilts, music, and drama to show how African Americans have communicated through this art form from the earliest days of slavery to the present era. Their show has been featured on the Public Broadcasting System and in syndication, and has been presented live as well. Lindsey was led to this creative endeavor after the death of her son Darrell, who was the victim of a drunken driver in 1988.

Quilting plays a large part in all of Lindsey's work. She teaches the craft to adults and children and has done extensive research on the role quilts played as secret maps for the Underground Railroad. She even features a self-created quilt in her children's book, Sweet Potato Pie.

Set around the turn of the twentieth century, Sweet Potato Pie tells the story of a family that turns a potential tragedy into a triumph. Drought kills all of Papa's crops except the sweet potatoes. Faced with the possibility of losing the family farm, Papa and Mama decide to bake sweet potato pies and sell them at a harvest celebration. The whole family pitches in to make the pies, and the tasty confections prove to be a best-seller at the fair. This gives Mama the idea to begin a business baking pies.

Lindsey has said that Sweet Potato Pie is based on her own experiences selling homemade pies at a festival in Southern New Jersey when she was young. Her work has a higher goal, however. "My stories convey a message that families who work together have greater knowledge of love and sound family values," she once recalled.

Lindsey is also the author of the play A Stitch in Time, which won a New Jersey General Assembly award. The play depicts life for African Americans during the U.S. Civil War era and its immediate aftermath. A lifetime resident of New Jersey, Lindsey lives in the same town in which she was born.



Booklist, September 15, 2003, Terry Glover, review of Sweet Potato Pie, p. 247.

School Library Journal, December, 2003, Susan M. Moore, review of Sweet Potato Pie, p. 118.


Kat Lindsey Home Page, (June 2, 2004).

Lee & Low Books Web site, (June 2, 2004), "Book Talk with Kathleen D. Lindsey."

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Lindsey, Kathleen D(orothy) 1949-

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