BY NANCY PAGE (Florence LaGanke)
There are a number of different TIC TAC TOE quilt designs, see also, for example, a very different version by NANCY CABOT. Barbara Brackman's ENCYCLOPEDIA OF PIECED QUILT PATTERNS lists this rendering as design #1003a in her "Two Block" pattern category, and as part of an interesting sub-section titled "One Block is a Checkerboard." Here the checkerboard is combined with an equally classic SHOO FLY pattern (see Brackman #1645 and compare at this site with another beautiful shoo-fly combination titled FENCE ROW QUILT).
As is clear from the illustration left this version of TIC TAC TOE was originally conceived as a 12 inch block, and was first syndicated in various newspapers by Nancy Page (aka Florence La Ganke) on September 17, 1935. The illustration here was clipped from The Hartford Courant. What makes the design a little more interesting than usual is that the two checkerboards are rendered differently and, in fact, that one small detail adds some much needed liveliness to the pattern (see how it tiles below). The opposing SHOO FLY solids needn't be the same color necessarily either.
Related designs at this site include:
AUNT PATSY'S PET
ON THE SQUARE
LIGHTS AND SHADOWS