By Jeff Murphy, April 9, 2021
The Missouri Bicentennial Quilt will be at the University of Central Missouri’s McClure
Archives and Museum and available for public viewing April 13-17.
WARRENSBURG, MO – Throughout Missouri’s 200-year history, quilts have been a part of the state’s culture, fashion and tradition. To commemorate the bicentennial, 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. Using one quilt block for each and every Missouri county and the independent City of St. Louis, the quilt reflects the unique characteristics of Missouri culture, region and style.
As it travels throughout the state in 2021, the Missouri Bicentennial Quilt will make a stop at the McClure Archives and University Museum at the University of Central Missouri. The quilt will be available for public viewing from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. April 13-16, and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, April 17. If interested individuals cannot make it to see the quilt, the Missouri 2021 team has developed a digital exhibition for viewing at missouri2021.org.
“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,” says Michael Sweeney, Missouri Bicentennial coordinator with the State Historical Society of Missouri. “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.”
Warrensburg resident Toni Peerbolte created the Johnson County block. It features the famous Old Drum statue in black stitching. Peerbolte is a member of Inspired Quilters Guild of Warrensburg.
Quilt block submissions were judged according to whether they met criteria, level of creativity and craft, and description of significance to be considered as part of the quilt. The judging committee included representatives from Missouri Star Quilt Company, the State Historical Society of Missouri, and Missouri State Quilters Guild. Over the winter of 2019-2020, Missouri Star Quilt Company stitched the blocks together and gave the Missouri Bicentennial Quilt its final look.
The quilt is coming to Warrensburg as UCM celebrates the 150th year. Along with hosting the traveling Missouri Bicentennial Quilt, the McClure Archives and University Museum also will have on display the Bicentennial 4H Quilt. It also will be available for the public April 13-17.
As the Missouri Bicentennial Quilt travels around the State of Missouri, it provides viewers with a unique visual opportunity to learn about the geographic and cultural diversity of Missouri and to identify some shared traits that make Missouri unique in the nation. For more information, visit missouri2021.org and for a schedule of events and programs happening throughout the Missouri bicentennial year.
To learn more about UCM’s sesquicentennial, please go to 150.ucmo.edu.