A Soldier’s Story
Corporal Thomas Noonan served in the British Army during the Crimean War (1854-56). He was later stationed at Halifax and eventually became warden of the military prison at Melville Island on the Harbour’s Northwest Arm. He stitched together this quilt using pieces cut from an old British Army uniform. Not surprisingly, red is the featured colour. But it’s not easy to pull a needle and thread through thick soldier’s cloth. Look how uneven the pattern is. A decorated soldier, Noonan’s most heroic act did not come in combat. In the winter of 1874, he rescued a drowning boy from the icy waters of the Northwest Arm. He died from the resulting exposure at age 38. His quilt was never finished.