Patches From the Past
Scraps of Fabric, Sewing & Quilting History

The Quilters Hall of Fame Now Resides
in the Marie Webster House

~by Karen B. Alexander ~
board member of the Quilters Hall of Fame

In 1979 Hazel Carter of Vienna, VA (formerly Hazel McDowell of Salem, Iowa), founder of the Continental Quilting Congress (CQC), realized a need existed in the quilt world that was not being met: the need to bring to the attention of quilters the work of previous generations of quilters and to recognize and praise the individuals of the present day who were bringing the story of quilting to the fore. How could this be remedied? After careful exploration and discussion with her fellow quilters, Hazel's insightful solution was the creation of the Quilters Hall of Fame. A selection committee was formed from a cross-section of the greater quilting community across the country to study nominations for future Honorees.

Marie Webster House

In the early years, each new Honoree was recognized at a special luncheon at CQC and a souvenir booklet prepared that gave a brief history of the contributions of that year’s Honoree(s). Dreams can converge in unexpected ways that can change the landscape of one’s own vision. In July 1991 two dreams merged at the West Coast Quilters Conference in Sacramento, California, during the induction of Marie Webster (author of the first book solely dedicated to the history of quilting published in 1915) to the Quilters Hall of Fame: Hazel Carter’s vision for the Quilters Hall of Fame and Rosalind Webster Perry’s vision concerning the legacy of her grandmother, early twentieth-century author and quilt entrepreneur Marie Webster. A most unexpected event took place at that ceremony. Within thirty minutes of their meeting, Rosalind—who had only months earlier rescued her grandmother’s Marion, Indiana, home from demolition—asked Hazel if she would like to use the house as the permanent home of the Quilters Hall of Fame. Hazel said "Yes!" and a whole new chapter in quilt history began. You can read this whole story in our first book "The Quilters Hall of Fame"* published and released in July 2004 in Marion, Indiana.

The mission of the Quilters Hall of Fame is to celebrate quilting as an art form by honoring the lives and accomplishments of those people -- 30 women and 4 men -- who have made outstanding contributions to the world of quilting; by restoration and now preservation of the home of quilt designer and author Marie D. Webster in Marion, Indiana; by promoting educational programs, exhibitions, publications and research; and by collecting and preserving and documenting materials related to the honorees of the Quilters Hall of Fame. Membership is currently only $30, so now is the time to join!

Your membership fee goes to the support of the operating funds for the Hall of Fame and also gives you free admission to The Quilters Hall of Fame, a discount at the musuem gift shop and a discounted registration price to attend the annual Celebration festivities and classes in July. Our newsletter comes out twice a year and carries news, articles and interviews about our Honorees. For an additional $15, you may join our museum support group, the FRIENDS of The Quilters Hall of Fame as well. The FRIENDS publish a newsletter eight times a year and keep you up-to-date on all the special events the Marie Webster Guild holds in conjunction with the Quilters Hall of Fame, as well as regular updates on changes and exhibits in The Quilters Hall of Fame. For a total of $45 you are encouraged to join both the Quilters Hall of Fame and the FRIENDS of the Quilters Hall of Fame, and receive both newsletters. As a result of becoming a member of both, you will learn more about our quilting heritage and become a vital contributor to quilt history yourself.

Memorial Bricks are available at $50 each. Just a few of the many reasons for buying a brick: honor a friend; remember a loved one; celebrate an anniversary; acknowledge your Guild. Your brick will be a part of the restored garden paths surrounding Marie’s home, the very gardens from which Marie Webster took so much inspiration for her many outstanding floral appliqué designs. If you order a memorial brick by January 30 in any given year, it will be laid in the garden walkway in time for the annual Quilters Hall of Fame Celebration in July. Buy a brick in January and come visit it in July!

*You may order our book "The Quilters Hall of Fame" directly from our website at Members receive a discount.

Do visit us at our website and become a member and support our quilting heritage through this very special museum.

Karen B. Alexander
Independent Quilt Historian
Board Member of QHF
(Do not reproduce this article without permission from the author.)

P.O. Box 681, Marion, Indiana 46952
Marion Office: 765-664-9333
Marion Office E-MAIL:

Related Resources:

Quilters Hall of Fame Membership Form
Adopt a Brick in Marie Webster's Garden Pathway
Documentary To Be Made Of the Quilters Hall Of Fame
The Marie Webster Story
Quilts: Their Story and How to Make Them (book review)
Marie Webster: Early Twentieth Century Quilt Designer and Historian

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