Missouri Bicentennial Quilt to be displayed at OCHS

By Neal A. Johnson, UD Editor
Posted 3/3/21

The Missouri Bicentennial Quilt has been completed and is ready to tour the state, with the Osage County Historical Society (OCHS) scheduled to display it from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. March 18-20, and from …

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Missouri Bicentennial Quilt to be displayed at OCHS

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The Missouri Bicentennial Quilt has been completed and is ready to tour the state, with the Osage County Historical Society (OCHS) scheduled to display it from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. March 18-20, and from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. March 21 at both the Cultural Heritage Center and Zewicki House Museum.
Since the pioneer days of the American Midwest, quilts have been a cornerstone of Missouri culture, fashion, and tradition. In honor of Missouri’s 200th anniversary, the State Historical Society of Missouri and Missouri Star Quilt Company, in partnership with the Missouri State Quilters Guild, teamed up to create the Missouri Bicentennial Quilt.
With one quilt block to represent every Missouri county and the independent city of St. Louis, the Missouri Bicentennial Quilt showcases the unique characteristics of Missouri culture and style.
“We knew we wanted to do something truly statewide that would reach every county in some way, shape, or form, even in a minimal way,” said Missouri Bicentennial Michael Sweeney. “A lot of these blocks are expressions of place and an opportunity to view them together and to put them in conversation was something we aimed for.”
Osage County is well represented in this quilt, with a block designed by Linda Monroe Roberts, a descendant of Adam Miller. The block represents the four rivers and two railroads in Osage County.
“This was a really neat process,” said Roberts.
Cultural Heritage Center Curator Roberta Schwinke added that she believes the block reflects the important elements of the county as the rivers and railroads enabled growth in the region.
The county was organized on Jan. 29, 1841, and named for the Osage River.
“Linda did a great job with the block and we’re pleased to have it displayed as part of the Missouri Bicentennial Quilt,” she added.
Quilt block submissions were accepted from October 8, 2018, through Sept. 2, 2019. Multiple submissions for the same county were judged according to whether they met the criteria, level of creativity and craft, and description of significance. The judging committee included representatives from Missouri Star Quilt Company, the State Historical Society of Missouri, and Missouri State Quilters Guild. All quilt block submissions will remain available for viewing at https://missouri2021.org/missouri-bicentennial-quilt/ through 2021.
Juanita Schuster, of Linn, daughter of Joe and Lois Helmig, created the Callaway County block for the state quilt. She also created a block in braille in honor of her niece, Vivian, daughter of Ron and Shanae Helmig, who attends the Missouri School for the Blind in St. Louis.
There is no fee to view the quilt but groups are encouraged to call 573-897-2932 to make a reservation. Wearing a mask is requested but not required.
Along with the Missouri Bicentennial Quilt, a state 4-H quilt featuring blocks from 4-H clubs in each MU Extension region will be on display.

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