82cm x 111cm
Salt was of great importance to the alchemists, being one of the so called 'Tria Prima'. Along with mercury and sulphur they believed all matter was composed of varying amounts of these 3 materials, with gold being the perfect balance of all 3.
Salt is a vital mineral for all living things - this fact has led it to be much abused by those seeking to make profit. In India the British-ruled government made it illegal for anyone without a licence to collect or manufacture salt, thus controlling the market. For centuries Indian people who lived near the coast had collected the naturally occurring salt from the beaches and used it for their own needs. Not only that, the British levied a heavy tax on the purchase of salt and as a result made this important dietary staple a very expensive commodity. This was widely seen as yet another unjust part of life under British rule.
Between 1920 and 1922 the opposition to British rule in India gathered pace and protest movements grew strong. One of the main leaders was Mohandas Karamchand 'Mahatma' Gandhi, who felt the best way to approach the situation was by adopting the concept of using direct action and nonviolent protest against the British, a concept he named 'Satyagraga'.
On 12 March 1930, Mahatma Gandhi led a peaceful and passive 24-day march from his home to the town of Dandi near the coast. His aim was to walk to Dandi, gathering protesters along the way, and end on the beach where he would illegally collect grains of salt from the sand and therefore break the salt law. His march gained worldwide attention and gave impetus to the campaign for Indian independence, being widely recognised as the start of the nationwide Civil Disobedience Movement. Unfortunately the so called 'Dandi March' or 'Salt March' march did not succeed in its own right, but was an important turning point in the independence movement. It was not until 1947 that India was finally granted independence from Great Britain.
You can read more about the making of this quilt from two blog posts I made as I was making the quilt. Click on the buttons below to view the posts.