The Humble History of the Barn Quilt

Groves BarnIn 1989, Donna Sue Groves along with her mother, Maxine, bought a farm in Adams County,Ohio.  On the property was a small and rather plain tobacco barn.  Donna Sue had an idea to have a quilt square painted on this barn to honor her mother who was a master quilter and show the pride of their Appalachian heritage.  In 2001, Donna suggested that rather than paint the quilt square on the barn herself, the community should come together and not only help with her barn, but create a driving trail of barn quilts across their county.  The Adams County trail of twenty barns was completed in 2003 and it encouraged tourists to visit that area.  The first quilt square, the Ohio Star, was hung on Lewis Mountain Herbs as part of the county's fall festival. Lewis Mountain Twenty barns symbolizing the twenty patches in a typical sampler.  This humble and artisitic expression of quilting in Adams County sparked an interest in neighboring counties and states and has caught on like wildfire across America!  Today, 24 states and over 1800 barn quilts grace this countryside!  Linked together, they create a "clothesline of quilts" across America that celebrates the art and history of quilting and showcases the uniqueness of each barn or building that they adorn!

More about Donna Sue Groves

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