As far as the history of this block goes, I don’t know much. The first time I remember seeing the block was in Laurie Aaron Hird’s book “The Farmer’s Wife Sampler Quilt.” According to her, all the blocks in this book were in use by the 1920’s.
The block can be constructed in several ways. A more difficult way is to cut each of the four "flowers" as parallelograms, and sew the block using Y-seams. However, if the block is divided into the 4x4 grid, it can be assembled rather simply with half square triangles.
Watch the video to see how the block goes together: