Historic quilts are among the few types of everyday objects that, by virtue of their artistic qualities, survive to join museum collections as American folk and decorative art. Their allure reaches beyond graphic quality to reveal stories of family, community and work lives. Forty-three artful quilts from the permanent collection of the Eastern Washington State Historical Society echo our collective Northwest experience and reflect generations of quilt traditions used to create objects of beauty and function.


Our special thanks go to co-curator Nancy Rowley for her patience, perseverance, and enthusiasm.  For over ten years Nancy has traced the genealogical roots of this quilt collection and is a creative and
intellectual force behind this exhibition.

Volunteers offered exceptional enthusiasm for this project. Once they ascertained the magnitude of readying the collection for exhibit, many women reorganized their personal schedule to ensure that each quilt was carefully considered, treated, and prepared. Their generous donation extends the longevity of the 165-piece quilt collection and reminds us that this collection exists for its community.

The Spokane Chapter of the Washington State Quilters assisted extensively in creating, promoting, and producing the exhibit’s demonstration activities and related programs.

Marsha Rooney, Senior Curator of History
Laura Thayer, Senior Curator of Collections