Thursday, November 09, 2023

Arizona Bound-

Good morning from Sun Lakes, Arizona!

I'm surprised I made it to 6:30am before rolling out of bed - but then my body clock decided it was really 8:30 at home time so here I am.

I'm just sitting here writing at my dad's little dinette table while he sleeps a while longer.

It's great being here - but it was also great getting here!

Everyone needs a friend like Martha who knows every back road and interesting piece of history.

I didn't know our back roads trip to the airport in Blountville, Tennessee would have a school house theme to it, but here we are!

Of course, Martha was already slowing down and hitting the brakes long before I could get the word "Stop!" out of my mouth.

Holy cow! What is this place? A school?

Of course, the sun was in the wrong spot for good photography, so I moved around the yard to try to get different angles where the sun wasn't making a halo behind that bell tower -

But maybe that says something too.

I looked this place up during my long layover in Atlanta.

I have no idea what book or publication this excerpt is out of but it includes information on this school which is found on Loves Mill Road, just out of Chilhowie, Virginia.

It was known as the Barrack Institute and was founded in 1866.

I love that the above text talks about "prior to the War between the States."

Evidently someone does own the property - was trying to get a grant to restore it as a historical site, and they were denied.  What will happen to it/ who knows.  It's magical.

I can almost smell the newly sharpened pencils, floor wax, school glue and crayons mixed with school lunch.

And that wasn't the only old schoolhouse we passed on our way - Not far up the road:

Oh my gracious!

What is this place?

Dare I peek into the front door?

This is just sad.  And creepy.  I went no farther.

After I had taken all of my photos, we went back on our way, and there was an old country church with an older gentleman doing some maintenance.  "Back up!" I begged Martha.

This is so far in the middle of nowhere that there were no other cars on the road, so she just hit reverse and we backed right up.  No need to turn around.  LOL!

The gentleman told us that this was the old Liberty Hall school. I did some digging. (It was a very long layover in Atlanta!

Liberty Hall School in 1979.

Liberty Hall School, Lodi community of Washington County, Virginia was originally built as an all male academy in  a different location, the current structure was erected in 1915 and subsequently went abandoned in the early 1980's. 

This rings a bell for me because I graduated high school in 1980 myself.

There is a Facebook page for all Liberty Hall alumnus that offers firsthand stories of it's past, including listening to the announcement of President Kennedy's assassination on Mrs. Weaver's transistor radio, being frustrated with the manual keys in Miss Shields' typing class because they would get stuck and make it difficult to accomplish 65 words per minute, and playing Cowboys and Indians in the graveyard across the street where soldiers from the Revolutionary War were buried. 

The school has since been purchased by a local farmer and is used to store hay. The upstairs auditorium has collapsed and the interior and exterior are decaying as quick as the memories that she offers. 

As we left we saw this mama sow and her piglets making a great escape from the pig farm next door.

Flying out of Tennessee over the Blue Ridge as it rolls down into Georgia.

I love seeing little towns between the ranges.

Landing in Phoenix last night!

I just heard dad stirring and that means morning hugs and getting breakfast going and seeing how this day will unfold -

You all know about our  Silk Path PDF pattern release and Gift-Away.  If you missed it:

Introductory Special: I have placed Silk Path at 25 % off in both the digital pattern section of the Quiltville Store and in the Quiltville Etsy Pattern Shop

Full color photos, step-by-step instructions included.

Quilt Size: 84’’ X 84’’

Sale price good through 11/15/23.  Hurry now and save - no coupon needed!

Time is ticking quickly by toward Part 1 of our Indigo Way Mystery posting on 11/24.

Quiltville Quote of the Day -

Kindness first, Always!
It's going to be a week of just hanging out and being together ahead of the holidays.

Happy Thursday, everyone.



  1. Interesting stores about old schools. Enjoy your time with your Dad.

  2. Anonymous11:00 AM EST

    I enjoyed your ride through the back roads of VA. Enjoy your visit with your dad! Roxanna

  3. Anonymous11:23 AM EST

    Your pictures of the schools are great! I also like the history connected to such structures. Thanks for sharing, have fun with your Dad.

  4. Anonymous11:25 AM EST

    Love your energy and fascination of old buildings!! Have a great time with your Dad in warm Arizona!!
    Looking forward to the mystery quilt clues the 24th!!

  5. Anonymous11:51 AM EST

    Have fun with your daddy! I miss mine everyday

  6. Oh, those old buildings are so interesting! And sad to see them falling down. Enjoy family time!

  7. Thanks for the Stops along your way. Glad you made it safely to Arizona. Grateful for your Kindness! Hugs!

  8. Janel Tomalis12:25 PM EST

    I found this....https://fineartamerica.com/featured/old-barrack-school-1-jim-love.html

    1. Anonymous11:30 AM EST

      fantastic resource for back roads in virginia, along with other things. thanks. patti in florida

  9. Love love the backroad travel pictures! Love that Martha JUST knows to let you get pictures! I thank you for doing the research on them I wish they could be saved... Enjoy your visit with your dad!

  10. Anonymous1:44 PM EST

    I love to go the backroads and skip the interstates. Karen

  11. Have a great visit with your dad. I'll be traveling to Phoenix in a couple of weeks to visit a dear friend. Love the backroads stories and pics.

  12. Anonymous5:26 AM EST

    I love a good adventure! I always “wiggle” my way from point A to B!! Enjoy your time with your dad!

  13. Have a wonderful visit with family, especially with your Dad. Catch you when you return!


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