Friday, August 09, 2019

Mona, Quilting, and a Little Bitty Side Trip!

It’s going to be a big time quilting weekend!

Mona (And Beanie and Max) arrived yesterday – I haven’t seen her for MONTHS as our paths have just been going opposite directions – but the stars aligned and she is mine all mine for the long weekend ahead – objective?  Operation Long Arm: On Ringo Lake, Good Fortune, and Texas Tumbleweed from MORE Adventures with Leaders & Enders are soon to be graduating to quilted quilt status.

We got On Ringo Lake locked and loaded, and before we knew it it was lunch time, I hadn’t packed a lunch – we needed groceries for the cabin as well, so we hopped in the van and trundled off to Independence.

Low and behold – the Independence 1908 courthouse was OPEN and after more than 2 years of living here finally made it inside – to a real treasure trove!

Mona, Moby and the 1908 courthouse!

QUILTVILLE INN and the early days!

On the wall were displayed all kinds of landmarks of Grayson County – imagine my delight when we saw these photos!  Look where the front porch swing is – I think I have an idea of where to hang the swing gifted by Melinda and her hubby. 

It is so interesting seeing this house I am so familiar with – looking just a bit different.  There are no porch rails, and the under-porch looks to be wood with even more windows, not brick like it is now. But those steps to the front door are the same – it just gives me chills!

The house was built by the same folks who built the 1908 courthouse, and also the really cute Grassy Creek Methodist Church that is not far from the cabin – this guy really liked his turrets.  LOL.

This is where the old mill stood -

It isn’t there anymore, just a shell of buildings -

But that is the side of my old general store – at the far left of the photo.  Same siding.  I’m looking at the far right of the photo and seeing bumpers of old cars. I’m guessing those are 1950s cars?

For over 100 years, the mill purchased raw wool from farmers from throughout the area, sold the spun fiber to other weaving mills, and manufactured woolen blankets sold to families across the region.

Less than a mile from Quiltville Inn -
Oak Hill Academy.

Independence hasn’t changed much!

Turret Staircase inside the courthouse.

There is an auditorium inside!!

Likely at one time court was held here -

But now it is for community events.

We loved poking around!

The ground floor hosts a museum –
Small enough to enjoy and get in and out quickly.

Interesting sampler of sorts on the bed -

My inner nine-patch lover spied the quilt up top!

Woven coverlets on display -

I’ve always been fascinated by all of the various designs in woven coverlets – the colors, the patterns, the textures – and the maker of these pieces was Fannie Halsey Gambill.

She was a master weaver, and it said that she also was mother to several children, and died at the young age of 41.  I just can’t imagine.   Nice to know about you Fannie -

We enjoyed our quick visit to the museum in the courthouse and I’ll be back to learn more of what I can about the early history of this area.

It was back to the Quiltville Post Office and Mona’s quilts – until dinner time!

And this is what is currently under my needle!

I had a brain storm on turning those license plates into placements and just how to make the odd sizes work together.

Scrappy is my jam, and string quilts are my thing and I am so excited now that I know what I want to do with these - each featuring 2 fun plates and binding that matches the sashing to finish.  Whoowhooo!  I’m so happy about these!

Mona is already at the long arm while I type this – her hubby Rick will be coming up this afternoon – the menfolk have plans for a long motor cycle ride (The longer the better so we can quilt more!) and we will enjoy our weekend ahead.

Quiltville Quote of the Day -

Vintage bear paw quilt found in West Virginia.

Start being happy right where you are by appreciating right where you are.

Have a wonderful Friday, everyone!


  1. You made the most of your day! Good times with Mona and the pups. Enjoy the Sneak peeks of our future Mystery, lucky Mona!! Way cool to find pictures of the Quiltville Inn from long ago. Cute placemats too! Busy hands are happy hands

  2. what fun! Did it say, in the notes on the bed quilt,anything about the Quilt. It sort of looked like leftover block from many different quilts...almost like a memory of quilts sent to family....or that just might be orphan blocks (like I have a mountain of). Thank you for sharing that wonderful trip, you have no idea what it means to quilters that can only dream.

  3. I really enjoy reading your posts. It sounds like a wonderful visit.

  4. How much fun to spend with friends who so enjoy the same things and each others company. I love, love, love Mona's quilts. Thank you for sharing the history of your region. Have fun and Quilt ON

  5. Hmmm ... when I saw that auditorium I wondered, "Could Bonnie use it to give lectures or presentations" I wonder.. you are now part of the community.

  6. I LOVE courthouses. I live in Kansas. My daughter and her 2 children (boy 7, girl 11) are on a quest to have a picture taken in front of each of the 105 Kansas courthouses. We are currently at around 65. For the most part we are not able to go inside but occasionally we go on Friday. When we do my camera gets filled with quilt ideas, both patterns and quilting designs. The old restored ones are so beautiful. And the stories behind them are intriguing. We hope to finish next year.

  7. Of course, you would put your 'plates' on placemats! Seems perfectly logical. I love a good pun so this makes me smile.

  8. Boy that Mona has come a long way quilting-wise since you two crossed paths. I remember that joyous picture from a few years ago when she got her first Featherweight. Enjoy your fun weekend.

  9. Fun info about Grayson County. What a thrill to see your property featured!

    The Oak Hill Academy part made me chuckle. We bought my aunt's house a few years ago, which is on a hill w many oak trees. She used to board dogs here, and called it Oak Hill Kennels. We homeschool, and I needed a name for our homeschool for paperwork. I was considering Oak Hill Academy - little nod to my aunt - and did a Google search just to double check. Found the venerable old institution in Mouth of Wilson - just after you'd announced the purchase of Quiltville Inn. Such a strange coincidence. Still trying to think of a good name for our homeschool, since that name's very much taken. ;)

    Way to go, Mona! Your quilt tops are beautiful.


  10. So, will you be adding a picture of the updated house (Quiltville Inn) to the original?

    1. That sounds like a great idea to donate to the museum at the courthouse... a then and now opportunity.

  11. Poor Fannie - either the dates of her life are wrong, or the math is wrong. I think she died at sixty-one after 41 years of marriage

    1. I looked her up - just to check the dates. They can't do math very well. lol
      Either that or she claimed to be 20 years younger than she was!

    2. Very cool! I love old historical places and you, Bonnie, are doing your best to revive them and keep them going. Thank you.

  12. I love old buildings to explore, court houses, churches, museums. I live in Independence Or and our local museum was once a church so much fun to see how others once lived and wonder about their life stories.

  13. One of the pictures shows an old teddy bear that looks just like the one my kids had. And looks to be in about the same shape when they outgrew it. I'm wondering if it's still around here somewhere!

  14. I have a friend here in western nc who teaches at John c Campbell folk school ....
    She makes coverlets like that.
    Grows her own flax, spins it, dyes it, weaves on a huge loom that takes up a bedroom - she makes those designs - hard to find anyone to do that Anymore

  15. Should have left this in above comment - -

    Check out her video at end of page... so interesting


  16. Love your idea for the license plates. Hope you do a tutorial on how you made the placemats. I always love your thought for the day at then end of your post.

  17. Our daughter attend Oak Hill Academy.....and we have been excited to see and read your progress with the Quiltville Inn. We hope to be able to visit you in the near future.

  18. So neat seeing more old photos of Quiltville Inn, and also glad someone else pointed out that Fannie died at 61 not 41, but knowing that is way too close to your age Bonnie. Love starting my day with all your adventures. Joan M.

  19. I loved seeing the Teddy Bear on the small nine patch quilt. I have one just like it that my uncle gave me when I was one or two, so mine is about 75 or 76 years old.

  20. Bonnie, in looking at the 3 quilts in front of Mona (the ones that need quilting), is the one on her left called Texas Tumbleweed? Is that on of your patterns? I love it! I am enjoying watching things develop at your quilt retreat house!


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